My Old Addiction



(out of 5)

 plays a basketball coach with a dubious past who shows up in the tiny Indiana town of Hickory to coach a team whose school has less than a hundred students.  He gets a bit of attitude from his players at first, but that’s nothing compared with the resistance he gets from the town’s adults: the other men think there’s no need to improve the way they have always run their game, while hard-edged high school teacher  wants him to leave the team’s star player alone so that he can pursue his studies and find his way out of their hopeless corner of the world.  There’s also  as the town drunk, once a star on the court himself who now embarrasses his son by staggering around shouting about his glory days.  Hopper is given a second chance by Hackman, who eventually makes himself welcome as he pulls the team together and starts to inspire hope that he will get Hickory to the state championship. Based on a true story, this is an exemplary sports film that throws up its high stakes immediately upon opening, placing you right into the centre of exciting conflict with the strong personalities it presents.  A few plot strands left dangling (such as the aforementioned golden boy’s future) don’t cause any concern since what is actually shown is so finely directed and performed.  The atmosphere of the beautiful, tranquil landscape provides a rich contrast with the intense action on the basketball court, which itself is nothing compared to the personalities that clash outside the game.

De Haven Productions, Hemdale

United Kingdom/USA, 1986

Directed by David Anspaugh

Screenplay by Angelo Pizzo

Cinematography by Fred Murphy

Produced by , Angelo Pizzo

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by

Academy Awards 1986

Golden Globe Awards 1986


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