20 South Court Street, Athens, Ohio 45701

http://athenacinema.com/appalachian/
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About the film

A true story of tragedy, hope, and resilience comes to the screen in this sports drama. Huntington, WV, is home to Marshall University, a school where college football is a way of life. Huntington is also a town that learned to deal with tragedy in the fall of 1970 when Marshall’s “Thundering Herd” boarded an airliner to return home after a football game in North Carolina. The jet crashed into a hill due to bad weather, and 75 members of Marshall’s football squad and athletic staff died that night.

The accident dealt a crippling blow to the city of Huntington, as well as Marshall’s faculty and student body, and university president Donald Dedmon (David Strathairn) considered abandoning the school’s football program. But instead Coach Jack Lengyel (Matthew McConaughey) was recruited from Ohio’s College of Wooster to rebuild Marshall’s football program. Lengyel was not naïve about the task ahead of him, and working beside Red Dawson (Matthew Fox), an assistant coach who narrowly missed the doomed flight and was one of the program’s only survivors, he came to understand his job was not just to put a team on the field, but help a college and a community heal their wounds from the tragic accident.

 

About the series

Following the success of the full capacity screening of our 50th anniversary of Appalshop’s STRANGER WITH A CAMERA screening in 2020, the Athena Cinema and partners present an exciting new film series on Appalachian culture and depictions in film.

The mission of the series is to connect Athens and the university community to the surrounding region by examining the different ways Appalachia has been represented through film. We seek to develop cultural competency and humility by showing viewers the way both the assets and challenges the region faces have been viewed by those who have the power to represent it on screen.

Short introduction/lectures will provide context for the film and introduce the underlying issues represented in film and other media. All events in the series are presented with free admission.

This series is sponsored by the 2023 Appalachian Studies Association Conference, Ohio Honors Program, Center for Campus and Community Engagement, Multicultural Center, Black Student Cultural Programming Board, Hocking Athens Perry Community Action Program, Athens County Public Libraries, University Libraries, Honors Tutorial College, Center for Advising, Career, and Experiential Learning, and OHIO Fellows.

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