Title: Remember the Goal (2016; PG)
Director: Dave Christiano
Major Themes: Running, Cross-Country, Faith
Synopsis: A new coach fresh out of college tries to lead a Christian school’s cross-country team to the state championships.
After watching and appreciating Overcomer recently, I was talking to the friends who had loaned that movie to me, and they said “Oh—you should see Remember the Goal!” That was another one I hadn’t seen, so I borrowed it, and watched it a week or two ago.
As a new teacher and the new coach for an all-girl Christian school’s cross-country team, Courtney Smith-Donnelly is determined to do her best for her girls and help them to gain victory at the state meet, if at all possible. She thinks it can be done. Her runners, however, aren’t used to her style of training—and soon, grumbling emerges. When smaller meets happen, and they steadily place last in the line, it’s not just her girls’ grumbling anymore—their parents, too, aren’t happy. What can she do to help them see that sometimes the way to win doesn’t always look the way you think it should look? And what about the troubles the girls are facing—can she help them through, and point them to their Lord, who understands and can help them?
Remember the Goal is one of those movies that I feel like could easily be lost in the scramble of life. It didn’t strike me as one of those that had a huge budget to get the job done, but it still carries a powerful message—one that I’m fairly certain I won’t forget anytime soon. When I say it could be lost, I mean that it isn’t one that would necessarily draw you in at first—many others would look more attractive to watch. But this has a certain tone about it; something that made me stop and think after I finished watching it. Am I keeping up with the diligent, steady work the Lord asks of me, so I will finish this race He’s set for me well? Christiano’s films often leave me feeling like this—the acting is okay, not necessarily exceptional; the film quality is okay, but not fantastic; but the story…the story is the draw, and the story leads us back to Christ and His work in us.
I enjoyed watching this film. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if I end up watching it again at some stage. It’s a great story; one that is definitely family-friendly, and has something about it that would apply to a wide variety of ages. I was encouraged by it, and I hope you will be, too, if you haven’t seen it already.
WARNING: At 25:30, a girl talks about another girl smoking weed; this is mentioned a couple of other times as well. At 32:30, a girl goes against her father’s wishes and goes out on a date with a guy (she later regrets it, and decides to honor her father’s request). At 42:23, a girl lies and then says “f—”.
Ages 8 – 12, 10 – 12, 12 – 15, 15 and Above, Adults, Family Friendly