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Movie Review


MPAA Rating: PG for mild language.

Reviewed by: Brett Willis

Better than Average
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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Adults Teens Family
Biography Sports Drama
1 hr. 54 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
October 22, 1993
Copyright, TriStar Pictures click photos to ENLARGE Scene from Rudy
Scene from Rudy
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Relevant Issues
Copyright, TriStar Pictures

importance of our “heart” attitude



determination / persistance / tenacity / perseverence / steadfastness / pursuing a goal relentlessly

resolve to have the same determination in your zealousness for the Lord Jesus

About hope


Other sports-related films

Celtic Pride
For Love of the Game
Jerry Maguire
Major League: Back to the Minors
Mighty Ducks III
Space Jam
Tin Cup

Featuring: Sean AstinDaniel E. “Rudy” Ruettiger
Jon FavreauD-Bob
Ned BeattyDaniel Ruettiger
Charles S. DuttonFortune
Vince Vaughn (Vincent Vaughn) … Jamie O'Hara
Robert Prosky … Father Cavanaugh
Greta Lind … Mary
Scott Benjaminson … Frank Ruettiger
Mary Ann Thebus … Betty
Lili Taylor … Sherry
Christopher Reed … Pete
more »
Director: David Anspaugh
Producer: TriStar Pictures
Distributor: TriStar Pictures, a division of Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment

“When people say dreams don’t come true, tell them about Rudy.”

“Rudy” is a worthwhile, fact-based story about a college-age student who refuses to give up his dream.

Although he and his family are die-hard Notre Dame fans, “Rudy” (Sean Astin) has always been told he’s not smart enough for college and certainly not big and strong enough for college football. As expected, he goes to work in the local steel mill, but then a mill accident involving his close friend spurs him to take another look at what’s most important to him in life. He decides to ignore the limits others have placed on him and to put everything he has into chasing his dream. It’s amazing how far that determination takes him.

The film has just enough profanity to make it a hard call for younger kids. There’s a death, and a scene of college kids drinking beer. The football practice scenes are realistically violent. No sexual content. One classroom scene contains an “interesting” view of the doctrine of Biblical Inspiration.

Some may feel that pouring your whole life into something like football is a waste. Probably true. But even if so, the general principle of pursuing a goal relentlessly can be taken and applied anywhere, in any life situation. If you choose to watch “Rudy”, you will be inspired by this touching true story.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive—Underrated movie and worth watching at least once. Rudy is a sleeper that is bound to be in at your local video outlet. I expected the typical Hollywood feel good story that’s nice to watch but doesn’t connect with life as most of us know it. Not so. Rudy, a true story, goes beyond football and portrays perseverence perhaps better than any movie I’ve ever seen; for how does one persevere when there is no happy ending? Rudy deals with this in a fine way, looking in rather than out.

The ending is moving—a friend of mine who went through a lot of rough times in his school years cried. You might too. Not a very flashy film, but I recommend it. My Ratings: [4/3½]
—Todd Adams, age 32
Positive—…The importance of our “heart” attitude is given heavy emphasis, as Rudy (like David of the scriptures) exhibits a “never-say-die” tenacity that slowly earns the respect of the doubters who at first only see his lack of natural outward abilities. Steadfastness, discipline and patience are just a few of the godly qualities demonstrated by the title character, who comes from a religious (Roman Catholic) though seemingly not “born again” family.

Priests also play a key role in providing counsel and assistance to Rudy, most notably a Notre Dame elder who helps our hero gain admittance to the university and later offers the sage wisdom, “There is a God, and I am not Him.”

Other than the work-related death of Rudy’s best friend and a brief barroom scuffle, violence is limited to a series of hard hits on the football field (mostly absorbed by Rudy, who often seems to be little more than a tackling dummy for his much stronger teammates).

For a nineties-made film, the film is remarkably sex-free, with no fornication shown or even inferred among the principal characters. Relations with the opposite sex are only briefly played for laughs in Rudy’s efforts to secure a date for an awkward classmate. In fact, the movie would likely have been rated “G” were it not for a few mild profanities and blasphemies. Commendably, near the film’s conclusion, one of its characters is even shown being rebuked and striving to break his habit of taking the Lord’s name in vain.

If you’re looking for some warm fuzzies, goosebumps and maybe a tear or two, take a look at “Rudy” as another demonstration of the principle that “with God, all things are possible,” and then resolve to have the same determination in your zealousness for the Lord Jesus!
—John Dickerson, age 39
Positive—Considering that I hate football, its amazing that I absolutely loved this movie! To me, its not a movie about football, but about pursuing a dream no matter what anyone, even your own family says to you. I highly recommend it!
—Maggi, age 23
Positive—After viewing this film on television several years ago, our family decided to add it to our collection. Our son, now 11, has watched it many times for the football scenes as well as the sheer inspiration it invokes. Sean Astin, who is Patty Duke’s son in real life, plays the part of the mediocre athlete and student that has a dream. The film has it all… hard work, determination, underdog success. In the same vein as “Hoosiers” and “Rocky”, you want to stand up and cheer at the end of the film as Rudy is carried off the field by the Notre Dame team.

As a Christian and a mother, I often recommend this film to other families.
—Judy, age 49
Negative—…I was so disappointed that I allowed my children to watch it—we even turned the volume down at one point. I lost count of all the G—D profanities (in my opinion, the worst of all foul language). It was a good movie… for adults. I want other parents to know, so they don’t make the same mistake with their children.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Jen Dunn, age 42 (USA)

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