The Heart of the Game
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Bill Resler was a professor at the University of Washington who had possessed a passionate interest in basketball. Resler decided to put his love of the game to work when he heard that Seattle's Roosevelt High School needed a coach for their women's basketball team. Despite having almost no experience as a coach, Resler landed the job, and soon began making a difference with the team, firing his players up with enthusiasm and encouraging them to think of themselves not as girl basketball players, but as athletes. Resler's coaching helped to turn a team that usually sat near the… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 86%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Girls have hoop dreams too. And dreams can come true at the final buzzer."
‑ Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine
"Emotional, uplifting, vexing and infuriating, it's the first basketball documentary worthy of being compared to 1994's Hoop Dreams."
‑ Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel
"Writer/director Ward Serrill's wonderful documentary, about a Seattle high school girls basketball team the Roughriders coached by the inspiring Bill Resler, is a "Hoop Dreams" of the early 21st century."
‑ Cole Smithey,
"It doesn't seem appropriate to call it luck, but somehow Mr. Serrill ends up with a story that would make any Hollywood sports movie proud."
‑ Joe Lozito, Big Picture Big Sound
"A true sports lover's delight."
‑ Jeffrey Chen, Window to the Movies
"[The film] covers seven years and touches on some of the same social issues that gave Hoop Dreams its epic sweep, yet Serrill fails to treat any of them adequately, and the narrative loses its shape as events unfold."
‑ J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader
"Sketchy as it can be at times, The Heart of the Game keeps us involved."
‑ Robert Denerstein, Denver Rocky Mountain News
"So many astonishing and inspirational events take place that if The Heart Of The Game wasn't such a great documentary, it could have and should have been a box office hit drama."
‑ Helene A Aasen, Film4
"Serrill does a good job of grounding the film with the conventions to suck you in and make the team likeable. But then the politics and real stories emerge, which makes the film truly stand apart from the crowd."
‑ Ryan Cracknell, Calgary Movies
"Boredom and irritation set in early with this shallow, parochial and blandly celebratory documentary about a US high-school girls' basketball team, of frankly limited interest to non-US audiences."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"The intrusive narration, from hip hopper Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges, offers little sense of real lives unfolding, more of a way being paved to an, admittedly tense, all-American triumph-over-adversity climax."
‑ Nick Funnell, Time Out
"An exhausting and thoroughly entertaining tale of race, fair play, loyalty, pregnancy and the true spirit of amateur athletics."
‑ Michael Booth, Denver Post
"A nice little documentary that proves that nice guys, and nice girls, don't always finish last."
‑ Robert Roten, Laramie Movie Scope
"Might best be thought of as a female version Hoop Dreams."
‑ Kam Williams,
"It's packed with left-field twists and turns and culminates in a genuinely nail-biting match where old rivalries come to a head. In the end, it's all you can do not to stand up and cheer."
‑ Stella Papamichael,
More reviews for The Heart of the Game on Rotten Tomatoes