I don’t know about you but I like to watch movies and documentaries that make me think. Sure I like to switch my brain off from time to time and just be entertained too, but lets face it you don’t have to work too hard to find that sort of movie.
Last night I had the great fortune to watch a new short film, Scrum by Poppy Stockell. As an avid sports nut, a movie about rugby had me a little worried, as I have yet to see a film that truly paints the picture of the game. In most cases the action looks contrived and stilted at best.
The film centres around the Sydney Convicts, a gay rugby club competing in the Bingham Cup. The cup was named after a team member that actually tackled one of the terrorists onboard a plane in the 9/11 disaster, who subsequently died anyway.
The film is really about selection, and the emotional complexity of being part of a team. The three central characters in spite of their sexuality could barely be more diverse. I can imagine a lot of people will find the movie quite challenging but the gentle humour sprinkled throughout turns a complex subject matter into compelling viewing.
Without giving anything away, there is a scene between the coach and one of his big burley players that is quite beautiful.
Being part of a team comes with responsibilities that are sometimes difficult to live up to. Rugby is no different to almost every team sport in that regard. However, add to that the complexity of men that have regularly been snubbed and not allowed to join or participate whole heartedly in team sport because of who they are, and the game is changed entirely.
Scrum was a delightful 50 minutes that I feel sure will start a lot of conversations. Poppy Stockell has managed to film rugby without making it look silly which apparently is not easy if history is any guide, and has captured beautifully so many of the issues that make effective team building such a wonderfully complicated art/science.
Gee I hope the people who need to see this short film will get the opportunity or will take the opportunity to watch it.