Harvard Beats Yale 29-29 | Film | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Harvard Beats Yale 29-29 

A documentary revisits the historic 1968 gridiron match-up

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I'm not much for football. To pretend I care (and to be annoying), when a team is waaaay down and out of time, I'll often declare: "There's a lot of football left to play." Every now and then, I'm brilliantly prescient. I sure would have been at the 1968 Harvard-Yale match-up, when the game's final minute gave one team 16 points, shifting it from the rout column to an official tie and informal victory. Kevin Rafferty's documentary revisits that game -- literally. Footage from the game -- from kick-off to final play -- is intercut with contemporary talking-head interviews with the players: the reputedly snobby, sheltered Yalies and the more politically active Harvard crew. Dissent raged on campus, and beyond the ivy-covered walls, less privileged young men slogged in Vietnam. (The odd player was a vet.) But as Western PA knows too well, football, and its storied rivalries, matter most of all. The players offer the occasional off-field nugget or observation that's mildly interesting. For instance, the "Doonesbury" cartoon was essentially born that year, spurred by Yale's preoccupation with football and its star quarterback, "B.D." And coincidentally, each team had a player who roomed with the stars of that other nightmare tie, Bush v. Gore 2000. But the scope of this film is pretty much limited to the game. For these guys, it was epic; for the rest of us, well, the last reel is an entertaining textbook example of that old truism: There's a lot of football left to play. Starts Fri., April 17. Harris



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