"Underdogs Take on Rugby"
What You Need To Know:
Based on a true story, THE NOMADS is a compelling, inspiring movie with great performances. For all its great elements, however, the movie sometimes feels awkward with some forced dialogue. THE NOMADS has a strong moral worldview that stresses helping other people see their potential. Also, the characters have strong story arcs where they turn into better versions of themselves. THE NOMADS is marred, however, by some foul language and drug references. So, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution.
THE NOMADS is a sports drama on Amazon Prime about two teachers and a group of high school students in Philadelphia who form a rugby team despite a lack of funds and other obstacles. Inspired by a true story, THE NOMADS is a compelling, well-acted movie with a strong moral worldview stressing helping other people see their potential, but it’s marred by some foul language and drug references.
Inspired by a true story, the movie begins by setting the context for the story by noting that in 2013 Philadelphia school districts fell prey to budget cuts. The budget cuts forced some schools to merge.
Enter Cassey McNamara, a female English teacher who takes on a new job as a history teacher at an underprivileged high school on the north side of town. While going through security on her first day, Cassey meets Mark Nolin, a fellow new teacher who’s taking on math after several years teaching science.
It’s obvious that the new school is in desperate need of improvements. Students run wild, graffiti decorates the halls and classrooms, etc. Cassey and Mark decide to start a rugby team to start investing in the lives of their students. However, they have to fund the team on their own and make sure that players have an appropriate grade point average to compete. This won’t be easy.
After rallying a motely group of misfits, Mark and Cassey lead intense practicing and encourage the team to have integrity and character. The team’s first scrimmage ends in a forfeit, however. Are these guys prepared to give rugby their best foot forward?
Viewers learn that Cassey’s late father coached Mark in rugby when she was a little girl. Though Cassey was too young to remember Mark, her father gave Mark a sense of purpose and a desire to teach other people about the sport. Through his rugby connections, Mark gets the team into a practice field with a major rugby team, and the high schoolers start to feel like they actually have some game! They decide to call their team “The Nomads.”
Meanwhile, one of the players, Jaymie, runs into his old gang, which made him push drugs when he was younger. Apparently, Jaymie owes a large sum to these guys, but he wants to get out of the trade. He sells some drugs to make up for his supposed debt and then turns the money into the gang leader’s main contacts. The only problem is, they lie and say he never gave them the funds. One day at rugby practice, the gang shows up and tensions flare. Jaymie gets shot, putting him in the hospital, and the rugby team gets cut.
What will they do now?
THE NOMADS is a compelling, inspiring movie with great performances. It’s obvious that Tika Sumpter, who plays Cassey and produces the movie, put her heart into the project. For all it’s great elements, though, the movie sometimes feels a bit awkward with some dialogue that feels forced rather than natural.
THE NOMADS has a strong moral worldview stressing friendship and helping other people achieve their potential. Also, the characters have strong story arcs where they turn into better versions of themselves. THE NOMADS is marred, however, by some foul language and drug references. So, MOVIEGUIDE® advises strong and extreme caution.