I was fortunate enough to see this movie earlier this year at a screening at the Tribeca Film Festival. It is a true story in the tradition of the underdog sports movie, much like Hoosiers.
Sean Astin is hired as the coach to lead the team in the final season of play for Norway, Iowa high school baseball. The high school is being forced by the state to merge with a larger high school, thereby ending a tradition of baseball dominance by this small school. The team and the town are demoralized by the upcoming merger.
Many of the players are also resentful that Astin’s character, Kent Stock, has replaced their beloved former coach. Through perseverence and a willingness to involve the town and the players, Stock is able to be somewhat of a success.
Suffice to say that this film does not have a totally happy ending; it is, after all a true story. But you will leave the theater feeling relatively satisfied with the way things turn out. As an added bonus The Final Season was filmed in Iowa, and a number of townspeople are extras. This gives it more than a veneer of authenticity.
The Final Season should appeal to those who enjoy enjoy different genres-there is even a love interest for Kent Stock. It is also appropriate for most ages-it is rated PG. So go see it! It opens October 12.