Based on a true story, Rudy apprises the story of an average Joe who worked as hard as necessary in order achieve his dream. Sean Astin, who plays Rudy, excellently portrays the characteristics that the director, David Anspaugh, wants the viewers to see. Anspaugh communicates the movie’s inspirational sports genre to the audience by making the protagonist relatable because like many viewers, the protagonist grew up with a dream to achieve something extraordinary. The film therefore properly fulfills the expectations of its genre because it features a round protagonist whose character drives him to success.
Born the third of fourteen children in 1948 in Joliet Illinois, Daniel Eugene "Rudy" Ruettiger grew up in a blue-collar family idolizing Notre Dame. From his childhood, Rudy is determined to join the Notre Dame Fighting Irish college football team. His entire life, people told him told he’s not good enough, not big enough, and not smart enough to succeed, let alone earn acceptance to University of Notre Dame. But it did not stop his relentless pursuit of his dream. Destined to follow his father and brothers to the local steel mill, Rudy writes his own script, and earns admission to Notre Dame. Once there, he becomes a walk-on player, serving on the scout team as a human tackling dummy for the starting players. Bloodied but unbeaten, Rudy keeps working to achieve his dream of running out the tunnel as a member of the Fighting Irish football team.
David Anspaugh excellently sends the intended message; no dream is too great as long as one is willing to work for it. By hyperbolizing real events in some scenes, Rudy sparked my emotions and turned me into a sports fan; rooting for this underdog who is willing to take whatever steps necessary in order to achieve his dream. Anspaugh’s cast play their roles perfectly; allowing viewers to see how each supporting character impacts Rudy, which in a sports movie, is critical because every athlete needs help to succeed. Astin, as well as the entire cinematographic team, display emotion very well by using deep and serious facial expressions as well as a balanced mix between close-ups and wide-shots, while minimilizing mid-shots, which often do not add to a scene. When looking at a close up of Astin, I felt as though I witnessed Rudy’s determination. For these reasons I therefore strongly recommend Rudy to both those in search of a quality sports film, and those looking for dramatic movies containing strong themes whose messages are crucial to achieving happiness and success.