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Released in 2013, 23 Blast is a wholesome and family-friendly sports film. Though not considered a Christian film, it contains religious elements and values. Based on a true story, this film follows Travis Freeman and his love for football. This beautiful story shows how Travis turns a disability into a blessing and overcomes the depression that threatens to ruin the rest of his life. Amazing and true, Travis’ story will touch the hearts of viewers and instill values of bravery and perseverance. 23 Blast is a touching film that follows the life of a remarkable young man.
23 Blast follows Travis Freeman, a boy growing up in a small Kentucky town. He is a hero on the football field, known for being an amazing athlete. He is in his junior year of high school, and everything seems to be going right. He has a beautiful girlfriend who is a cheerleader and a promising career on the football field. Life is very normal for him, until he is stricken with terrible headaches. One migraine turns into another, and a whole string of severe migraines start giving him immense pain.
One day, he contracts a bacterial meningitis infection that sends him to the hospital. There, a team of doctors is forced to remove the infection as best they can in order to save his life. The surgery is successful, but it has altered him greatly. Because of the infection, Travis is robbed of his sight. This sudden blindness terrifies him, as he did not know that this is what would happen to him. With no time to prepare his heart and his mind for this terrible disability, Travis sinks into a deep depression.
Just as he begins to steel his heart toward his blindness, he realizes that he is also going to lose football. Forced to abandon the team, he becomes extremely caught up in grief. Getting out of bed in the mornings seems pointless, and it seems as if he has no reason to live. When it seems that things can’t get any worse, Travis’ girlfriend informs him that she is breaking up with him. Her shallow love for him wounds him deeply, as he realizes that she only wanted to be with him because he was a popular football player.
He is faced with an extremely tough decision, as he must decide whether to return to his high school or attend a school for the blind that is far away from his home. Neither option feels comfortable, as one requires him to return to his old friends and a school that will not cater to his blindness, and the other requires him to move far away from his family and his home. Filled with a new determination, Travis decides to return to his old school and accept the challenge that life has given to him.
With the help of his best friend, Jerry, a childhood friend named Ashley, and a new mobility coach, Travis is able to return to school as normal and continue his education. However, he still misses football greatly and wishes that he was not blind. When he begins his senior year, he and Ashley go to the football practices every single day after school is over. Though he sits on the sidelines and cannot actually watch what is happening, he listens to what is going on and soaks in new information about the game. His heart still yearns to be out on the field, though this seems impossible.
Unfortunately, Corbin High School faces a severe losing streak that threatens their reputation in the high school football community. One day, his mentor, Coach Harris approaches him with a wild idea. He suggests that Travis return to the football field in order to help out his team. They desperately need him if they are to win any games, and he considers this offer. Without much hesitation, he decides to rejoin the team and face any fears that he still has about his blindness.
This is a huge undertaking, but Travis is filled with determination. He won’t let anything stop him and decides to make the best of the situation he has been placed in. Coach Harris appoints him as center for the football team, a position that works best with his disability. With great perseverance and hard work, Travis helps guide the team back to victory, breaking their losing streak. Though he was terrified about his original decision to return to Corbin High School and the football team, his determination and perseverance helps him lead his school to victory.
Based on the true story of Travis Freeman, 23 Blast is an inspiring film that shows what perseverance and hard work can do. Though faced with a challenge that is seemingly impossible, Travis overcame his disability and the voices of doubt all around him. Playing football blind was a terrifying and challenging choice to make, but he decided to try anyway.
The theme of perseverance and hope is greatly displayed in this film. At first, after being struck with blindness, Travis recedes from his family and friends. It seems as though everything that was good in his life has been taken from him, and he does not want to do much of anything. However, he soon realizes that life must go on and that he can’t sit around and bemoan his situation. Nothing can be done to correct his loss of vision, so Travis decides to take every opportunity to make his life meaningful. 23 Blast carries an inspiring message of hope in a very dark situation. Everything in his life seems to be falling apart, but Travis grabs hold of his future and makes something great out of the disability he has been given. This film teaches lessons about taking hold of your goals and dreams, determination, hard work, and renewal. Though not marketed or considered a Christian film, 23 Blast is wholesome and family-friendly, filled with Christian values and moral lessons for the entire family.
great film (Posted on 9/22/15)
Imagine being at the top of your game, a football star, everybody loves you, when all the sudden you're struck with blindness and it's all gone. This is what happens to Travis Freeman in 23 Blast, and we follow him through the film as he struggles to find a sense of normalcy again. An encouraging and exciting sports movie, 23 Blast is a high-quality football film well worth adding to your collection. (Posted on 7/22/15)
I would rate this film up there with "Facing the Giants". It is a low budget (you can tell in some of the scenes), good quality film with an excellent message. We were pleasantly surprised with some of the events that played out on the movie, mostly with Travis agreeing to play football for his old team after he became blind. The movie leaves you biting your nails at the very end to see the outcome. We love good football films and this one is a keeper! (Posted on 6/23/15)