More About McFarland, USA
In this inspiring Disney sports drama based on actual events, Kevin Costner plays a high-school football coach who ends up leading a cross-country track team made up of lower-class Latino students to a state championship.
Jim White (Costner) finds his days as a football coach numbered when an incident with a player leads to his dismissal. Desperate for work, he moves his wife (Maria Bello) and daughters (Morgan Saylor and Elsie Fisher) from Idaho to McFarland, CA, a rural town that's predominately Latino and the only place willing to give him a teaching job. The family feel like they don't fit into their new community, but White has an epiphany one day when he sees his students running from their early-morning farming jobs to school: Why not channel their talents into running cross-country track? Soon enough, White is connecting with his young charges, particularly a gifted athlete named Thomas (Carlos Pratts), and the squad set their sights on a state championship.
Main Cast & Crew
Niki Caro - Director
"[T]he movie delivers as promised on the thrill of the race and the lump in the throat." - 02/19/2015 Rolling Stone
"[A] canny combination of elements unites with an unlikely true story to make this more effective than you might be expecting." - 02/19/2015 Los Angeles Times
3 stars out of 4 -- "Carlos Pratts is excellent as the fastest and the most troubled runner on the team. Ramiro Rodriguez has some shining moments..." - 02/19/2015 Chicago Sun-Times
3 stars out of 4 -- "McFarland turns out to be a cross-cultural charmer, an endearing true story told with intelligence and warmth by director Niki Caro." - 02/20/2015 USA Today
"[Caro] has an eye for dramatic landscapes, which lends some visual grandeur to the training and racing scenes." - 02/25/2015 New York Times
3 stars out of 5 -- "The kids are a likeable bunch and Costner, as ever, imbues the hooey with enough gravitas to make you care." - 10/18/2015 Empire