What You Need To Know:
THE GOAL has plenty of overt Christian content, including answered prayer and discussions of going to church. However, for each member of the quad rugby team, it sometimes seems that their faith is not enough but that quad rugby saved them from giving up on life. With a little editing, THE GOAL would have been better. Although there is some amateur acting, much of it is professionally competent. Ryan Parker as Steve is very good. Ultimately, THE GOAL has such a compelling story and big heart that it's well worth watching.
(CCC, FR, L, V, S, A, M) Very strong Christian worldview with moral messages and an indication that finding a purpose in life is more than just finding Christ with answered prayer, a father who's a preacher, discussions of going to church but it seems as if knowing Jesus is not enough, there has to be another goal; two light obscenities and lying rebuked; violence with man hitting his head on a mountain bike ride and several times with quadriplegics falling over, falling downhill, banging into one another playing quad rugby; no sex but lightweight discussions of sex; no nudity; alcohol use; no smoking; and, discussions of urinary tract infection and other problems that happen to quadriplegics.
THE GOAL has a big heart and its heart will win over the audience in the end.
Based on a true story, it tells about a pastor’s son, Steve, who skips church to train for the Olympics. On a mountain bike ride, Steve falls, hits his head and becomes a quadriplegic. In a parallel story, soccer player Jason has a car accident and becomes a quadriplegic. While their parents and friends pray for them, they are both ready to give up on life. Steve’s mother’s prayers are clearly answered when Steve discovers quad rugby. Quad rugby gives these once-athletic young men an opportunity to go back to what they like to do best, which is physical competition. Every step along the way, however, is difficult. They fall, they get hurt and they have urinary tract infections which can kill quadriplegics, according to the movie.
Spiritually, the movie has a lot of overt Christian content. It even discusses theology. Steve thinks he’s being punished for skipping church, but his pastor father sets him straight. However, for each member of the quad rugby team, it sometimes seems that their faith is not enough but that the quad rugby game saved them from giving up on life. Clearly, this is not the intent of the filmmaker, but it is a weakness in the plot line.
With a little editing, THE GOAL would have been even better. As it is, it is clear that many of the people in the movie are family and friends. So, they’re given extra time almost as if it were a home movie. At the end of the movie, the credits tell us that several of them are quad rugby champions, or have excelled in some other areas despite their quadriplegic status.
With a little more money, the sound should have been re-mixed. The music track overpowers the dialogue tract. That said, the music and the dialogue are well-suited for the movie. Although there is some amateur acting, much of the acting is competent, and Ryan Parker as Steve is very good.
Some of these flaws would cripple most movies, except THE GOAL has such a compelling story and big heart that it’s well worth watching. Also, since the movie was made to raise funds for various organizations concerned with quadriplegics, MOVIEGUIDE® urges people of faith and values to see THE GOAL.