Parents' Guide to

The Heart of the Game

By Cynthia Fuchs, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Excellent high school sports documentary.

Movie PG-13 2006 102 minutes
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What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 8+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 8+

age 8+

A positive story with some grown up content, responsibly handled

I watched this with my 8 year old son because I went to the high school where it was set (2 decades before the documentary was filmed!!). I was cautious about letting him watch it because I read that it briefly discussed the sexual abuse of one player and the teenage pregnancy of another, and I was prepared for challenging questions at the end. My son's only question was, "Why did the girl cry when she won the game?" The main coach, though extremely competitive, had a very positive way of interacting with his players, which I was happy for my son to see. There was also open, honest, and positive discussion of race and socio-economic disparity which I think is also worthwhile for kids to view in this context. Overall I think it was a great film for teenagers for certain, and for younger kids too, if watched with parents who are prepared to discuss the questions that might be raised. Very entertaining and uplifting overall.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (2 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Heart of the Team is an intelligent, challenging, and entertaining documentary that's been compared to Hoop Dreams, probably the best sports documentary ever. But Heart also does some important work that film does not, namely, it considers issues specific to girls, including a sexually abusive coach one girl hires to improve her personal game and the subtle and unsubtle ways that misogyny still shapes expectations of women athletes and girls with ambitions.

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