Greater released yesterday in theatres. Greater is the story of Brandon Burlsworth - 'The Incredible True Story of the Greatest Walk-on in the History of College Football'.
Greater opens in 1999 Arkansas, where a young, awkward, clumsy Burlsworth declares that he is going to play for the Razorbacks one day. And then cuts to a road with a semi barreling down it, facing an oncoming car. So we know the beginning and the end. But it's the stuff in the middle that will have you laughing, crying, cheering and wishing you could have met this incredible young man....
Chris Severio stars as Brandon and veteran actor Neal McDonough as his older brother. Severio was great as Brandon - physically he looks very much like Burlsworth and his quiet, gentle, steadfast portrayal of this determined young man seemed to embody the spirit of Brandon. McDonough often appears as a 'bad guy' in movies - it was refreshing to see a different side - as Marty, Brandon's caring and devoted brother. I also thought Leslie Easterbrook did a great job with the role of Brandon's Mom - personifying her steadfast belief in her son and her resolve to help him reach his dreams.
This is a movie about faith - faith in yourself, but most of all faith in God's plan. Brandon has no doubts, but his brother does. Director David Hunt sets up a nice visual of good and bad/God and the Devil using an old man and a young man on the sidelines of the football field to illustrate this.
Brandon's faith never wavered - he believed. Despite the odds, the setbacks, the cruelty and derision, rejection and dejection, he believed. And in doing so, others believed.....
Just an excellent, excellent movie - entertaining, but with a great message. It's rated PG, so it would be great family viewing as well. (But have some tissues ready...) Take a sneak peek at the trailer below.
"Do it the Burls Way". A saying coined after Brandon's death that means do it the right way, even when no one is looking - a good way to live life. I loved one of the last lines.....'Have Faith. This is My Road'. So....what's your road?