Did you love Rudy? Do you love that genre?
Then you'll love McFarland, USA.
What makes us love this genre, even though it's formulaic, entirely predictable and has cliched characters? Maybe it's because we can relate to the underdog who, against all odds, perseveres and comes out on top. And it makes us feel good.
Kevin Costner is beautifully understated as the grumpy coach who's been fired from too many jobs to count, and who finds his passion with the sad group of hard-working kids who want to make their mark.
It's a sweet film and you can't help but love all those familiar characters, even if we've seen them before.
The acting and the heart are the standouts of McFarland. And kudos to Niki Caro, who directs with subtlety.
Who can resist cheering for the underdog?
Four of five stars for McFarland, USA.