Friday, January 18, 2008

Movies Men Are Allowed to Cry Through: Brian's Song

When I was a kid, I remember watching Brian’s Song and quite understanding the overall importance and the underlying message in the film. About five years ago, I was flipping through the channels when I caught the movie at just the right time. After the initial shock of watching an early-70’s made for TV movie staring Billy Dee Williams and James Caan, I settled in and watched one of the greatest movies ever made.

At just over 70 minutes long, the movie is little longer in length than your average television drama episode; but the short run time doesn’t allow for a dull moment. Rather, you see the camaraderie of Gayle Sayers and Brian Piccolo almost immediately. They’re a backfield tandem, they’re roommates, and they were mixed-raced best friends, which wasn’t often seen in the mid-60s.

Then ‘Pic’ started getting sick. As 'Pic' gets more sick, his friendship with 'Black Magic' only grows stronger. The strength of Brian Piccolo, along with the friendship he shared with Gayle Sayers are the driving forces of this movie. As Brian Piccolo is nearing death, Gayle Sayers goes to accept the George S. Halas aware for courage and delivers one of the most tear-inducing scenes in movie history.

I'd like to tell you about a guy I know, a friend of mine. His name is Brian Piccolo. And he has the heart of a giant, and that rare form of courage that allows him to kid himself and his opponent, cancer. He has a mental attitude that makes me proud to have a friend who spells out the word 'courage,' 24 hours a day, every day of his life. Now you honor me by giving me this award. But I say to you here now Brian Piccolo is the man who deserves the George S. Halas award. It is mine tonight... and Brian Piccolo's tomorrow.

I love Brian Piccolo and I'd like all of you to love him, too. And so tonight, when you hit your knees, please ask God to love him.

It doesn’t get any better than that. If you can get through this movie without crying, then you’re a soulless beast. I love Brian's Song and I’d like all of you to love it, too.

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