The Heart of the Game (image 1)

Screened as part of NZIFF 2006

The Heart of the Game 2005

Directed by Ward Serrill

Documentary follows hoop dreams of Seattle schoolgirl team. "A smartly paced chronicle that nails the socialization of girls, the costs of playing ball, and the perils of female adolescence." — San Francisco Bay Guardian

USA In English
105 minutes 35mm

Director, Screenplay, Photography

Editor

Eric Frith

Sound

Bad Animals

Music

The Angel

Narrator

David Scully

With

Darnellia Russell
,
Bill Resler
,
Joyce Walker
,
Devon Crosby Helms
,
Maude Lepley

Festivals

Toronto 2005; San Francisco 2006

Elsewhere

The Heart of the Game is a lively, perceptive picture of young women in sport – and a portrait of an inspired and inspiring coach. In particular, it’s about the challenges facing a brilliant young basketball player who seems bent on sabotaging a potentially glorious career. Bill Resler, a tax professor and father of three daughters, steps in, with little relevant experience, to help out with a team in a middle-class, mostly white Seattle school. Resembling a jovial Santa Claus, he cultivates a great rapport with the girls, who soon begin to thrive as a team. He meets his match when Darnellia Russell, an extraordinarily agile, gifted African-American player from the inner city, joins the team. Not all the action is in the sports arena in a film bound to induce more heart-thumping excitement – and more tears – than many of the features on this year’s programme.

“A smartly paced chronicle that nails the socialization of girls, the costs of playing ball, and the perils of female adolescence… Hoop Dream, move over!” — B. Ruby Rich, San Francisco Bay Guardian