Harvard Beats Yale 29-29

Rated 5.0

If the surprisingly compelling play-by-play documentary Harvard Beats Yale 29-29 proves anything, it’s that the greatest football games of all time are built on a foundation of blown calls, sloppy play and stupid luck. If it proves anything else, it’s that any great game could serve as the subject of a feature-length dissection, if only it were made with the same intelligence and precision as Kevin Rafferty’s magnificent film. The game in question is the 1968 clash between the undefeated Harvard and Yale teams on the final day of the season (the ranked Yalies, with future pros Calvin Hill and Brian Dowling, were heavily favored), but the larger picture finds room for the Vietnam War, student unrest, Bush v. Gore, the slo-mo bubble of adolescent celebrity and, in the film’s comedic highlight, the grandiosity of memory.