Mar 16
Saturday 1pm ONLY!

Suzannah Herbert & Lauren Belfer - 2019 - 96m - No Matinees

HOOP DREAMS goes to the mat in this intimate, coming-of-age documentary about four members of a high-school wrestling team at Huntsville’s J.O. Johnson High School, a longstanding entry on Alabama’s list of failing schools. 

Coached by teacher Chris Scribner, teammates Jailen, Jamario, Teague, and Jaquan each face challenges far beyond a shot at the State Championship: splintered family lives, drug use, teenage pregnancy, mental health struggles, and run-ins with the law threaten to derail their success on the mat and lock any doors that could otherwise open. Tough-love coach Scribner isn’t off the hook, either; he must come to terms with his own past conflicts while unwittingly wading into the complexities of race, class and privilege in the South. 

Director Suzannah Herbert and Co-Director Lauren Belfer captured over 650 hours of footage during the course of the team’s final season to create this closely observed, deeply affecting depiction of growing up disadvantaged in America today.

"ENGROSSING... in the mode of 'Hoop Dreams' and 'Friday Night Lights,' WRESTLE trains its gaze on an underdog high school's grappling team over one eventful season's course." - Dennis Harvey, Variety

“Just as sports mirror society, so do the best sports films not only take us inside games and those who play them but also provide insight into our world and how it works. “Wrestle,” a superb sports documentary, does exactly that…..comparisons to Steve James’ landmark “Hoop Dreams” are inevitable and legitimate.” - THE LOS ANGELES TIMES

“Raw and empathetic, Suzannah Herbert and Lauren Belfer’s vérité portrait of four high-school wrestlers disdains forced uplift.” - THE NEW YORK TIMES

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Wrestle poster