Beartown, set in Sweden, explores the role a junior ice-hockey team has in a small community, the hope, the secrets that could tear the town apart, the courage it takes to go against the group and the consequences of how we raise our children.
It is the story a place where the social fabric of the town and its residents' identities are intrinsically tied to the rise and fall of their high school sports team. Weekly games are almost akin to religious services, which may seem backwards to people who didn't grow up in towns like that, but often people are at their most human — and the good and bad that entails — when there are wins and losses on the line.
While initially "Beartown" is a story, like that of so many sports films, of a struggling team made new by a coach burdened by some mysterious weight from his past. Then it all comes crashing down.
Based on a the novel "Björnstad" by Frederick Backman, the story exposes the dark side of toxic masculinity in sports.
Its offers a lesson people on this Dboard need to learn. "Hockey is just a silly little game," Backman wrote in his novel. "We burn and bleed and cry, fully aware that the most the sport can give us, in the very best scenario, is incomprehensibly meager and worthless: just a few isolated moments of transcendence."
On the brighter side there's a new mighty ducks coming out!