Last night we saw Heart of the Game, a documentary about a girls' high school basketball team in Seattle. We came in a little late, but the gist of it is this guy, who teaches tax law at some institution of higher education, coaches the Roosevelt High School Rough Riders, always to the playoffs and to the brink of championship. Their emerging rivals, the [X-named High School] Bulldogs, after years of ignominy, retain the services of awesome basketball player and alumna Joyce Walker, and become powerhouses in their own right.
Apparently, the filmmaker (Ward Serrill) worked on this film over several years, and it shows, because he's got more than one story to tell--will the Lady Rough Riders win a state championship? Will Darnellia Russell be the first person in her family to go to college--on a scholarship? etcetera. But it doesn't matter what narrative brilliance this film may or may not have. It is stirring and stimulating and interesting. Excellent basketball action, too, in my opinion. I encourage one and all to see this little movie right away.
Just for the record, the best films we've seen this summer have all been documentaries--Wordplay, An Inconvenient Truth, and now this. The best fictional film I've seen was A Scanner Darkly. Not too talky, intelligent, absorbing. I haven't seen any of the blockbusters--not Superman, not X-Men, no other -men--and that's just fine by me.