Photos and Video
Baseball's tradition in small-town Norway, Iowa is as rich as its soil. In a farming community consisting of 600 residents and 4 downtown blocks, baseball is the force that has united the town for decades. From the same baseball-rich cornfields as Field of Dreams comes The Final Season, an inspirational tale based on true events. Having led the Tigers to victory in 19 out of 22 high school championships, Coach Jim Van Scoyoc (Powers Boothe) has an unwavering commitment to his team. But bureaucracy threatens to merge Norway into a larger school, depriving Norway of its individuality as well as its 20th win. In a manipulative move, Coach Van Scoyoc is fired in the hopes that the new coach, Kent Stock (Sean Astin), with only one assistant coaching season behind him, won't rally the team to glory. Angst-ridden Mitch Akers (Michael Angarano) reluctantly joins the Tigers as somewhat of a misfit, a recent Chicago transplant more interested in smoking cigarettes than hanging out with the local farm boys. State government representative Polly Hudson (Rachael Leigh Cook) comes to town to break the news: the state intends to close the high school- and thus the championship-winning program-in an effort to cut costs. The Final Season is a classic tale of the government's attempts to suppress long-standing tradition in exchange for "progress." But the town's resilient spirit in the face of adversity illuminates how passion and commitment can keep a dream alive. At its core, The Final Season depicts the town's loss of innocence as the modern world of mega-schools encroaches on the formerly insulated baseball haven. David M. Evans scores a home run in this feel-good family film that illuminates the power of unity.
Director's Statement Collapse
The more I learned about the remarkable story of the 1990/1991 Norway, Iowa Baseball Teams, and Norway coaches Jim Van Scoyoc and Kent Stock, the more impassioned I became to make the film. Much more than a "baseball" film (and believe me, there's certainly nothing wrong with a baseball movie - I've made a few), it seemed to me that the real story was about courage, commitment and character. It took enormous courage, total commitment and unwavering character for this team from a high school with less than 100 students to compete against and ultimately defeat teams from a school ten times their size. Yet it wasn't a David and Goliath story… What fascinated me the most was that the coach and his team endeavored to go all the way and win an unprecedented 20th Iowa State High School Baseball Championship in their final season, when there wasn't anything really waiting for them in the end -- no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. They did because it was the right thing to do, and it's how they got remembered.
Film Information Collapse
[FINAL] | 2007 | 114 | Narrative Feature
Foreign Title: (The Final Season)
About the Director(s)Collapse
DAVID MICKEY EVANS was born in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania and grew up in Pacoima, California. A passionate cinephile since childhood, it was his 14th viewing of Star Wars (during its initial release, no less) that inspired him to become a filmmaker. Encouraged by his cinema teacher in high school, he applied and was accepted to the Film Department at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. After graduating with both a B.A. and M.A., he lived the life of a starving artist for three years until he sold his original screenplay Radio Flyer, which was made into a feature in 1992. In 1993, he directed The Sandlot, which has gone on to become a beloved children's classic. Evans lives outside Los Angeles with his wife and four children.