What if you could go back and change all the bad in your life?  And if you could, would it also change the good?  Such is the premise of the new to Blu-ray football flick "Touchback," out now from Anchor Bay Home Entertainment.  The review pass goes long below.




   Title: "Touchback"

   Grade: 5

   Cast: Brian Presley, Melanie Lynskey, Kurt Russell

   Director: Don Handfield

   Rating: PG-13

   Runtime: 121 minutes

   Release Company: Anchor Bay Home Entertainment

   Website: www.anchorbayent.com




The Flick: Why this film didn't get more critical notice is a mystery because "Touchback" is right on par with greats like Hoosiers and Field of Dreams.  Featuring a raw, real and heavily emotional story, this one takes the 'do it over' device to a whole other level.  But what really gives this football themed flick its kick is the cast.  Kurt Russell as the caring coach, the captivating Melanie Lynskey as a shy gal coming out of her shell, and especially lead Brian Presley here playing a challenging and chameleon-esk dual role of a man at both the best and worst times in his life – all blow mediocrity out of the water.  (Plus the quirky and interesting side characters are way too many in number to mention here!)  Skilled writer/director Don Handfield uses football as the shell of his story (and the games are thrilling to watch), but wisely fills his layered drama with heart, heartache and redemption – all in the space of 121 minutes.

Best Feature: There’s a 'Making-of' Featurette and 'Commentary' with both Handfield and Presley that have equal amounts of insight and inspiration.

Best Hidden Gem: As if the above talent weren’t enough, the highly underused and ever-amazing Christine Lahti plays Presley’s hard working single mom with gusto.

Worth the Moola: The last time I cried this seriously because of a film was back in 1988 for the film "Running On Empty," which ironically also starred Lahti. (She picks these on purpose!)  Five star work not to be ignored, "Touchback" is simply touching.