Safety (2020)

★★ | by

Posted on May 14, 2021

© Walt Disney Pictures | Steve Swisher


Ray McElrathbey, a footballer representing Clemson University, faces various trials as he raises Fahmarr, his younger brother after the latter’s life at home is in turmoil.

The film begins with Ray McElrathbey (Jay Reeves) joining Clemson on a full scholarship for his accomplishments at High School football, who later has to embody the role of guardian and carer to his little brother Fahmarr (Thaddeus J. Mixson).

The film is a good reflection on the pressures for student-athletes and how vital commitment is. Showing up for your chosen family and the balance between supporting and showing up for your actual family is something we all experience at some point. As such, the film’s key message is that nobody who is under extreme circumstance should be forced to choose. As per usual Disney’s sweet, motivational message hit the jackpot there!

Being a big American football fan, I didn’t know what to expect from this film. I know one thing is for sure that whilst I saw a display of resilience in the face of adversity… I didn’t see grit. Which I personally love to see in sports films and documentaries in general. That’s what was missing for me. I also learned at the end of the movie, that this was in fact based on a true story, therefore the Wikipedia got rinsed and google was queried (who doesn’t do this?). I was shocked to then find out that Clemson had released Ray Ray the next year after a torn ACL, which put a real dampener on the film for me.

The film overall was heart-warming and the relationship between Ray Ray and his little brother Fahmarr is equally so.

What does sacrifice mean to you? It means being selfless. Committed. – Tommy Bowden

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