Road to Victory (2007) – By Brian Morton

 When you tell people that you watch indie movies, usually they think of low budget sci-fi or horror movies, and, for the most part, that’s what it is…and I enjoy that. But, sometimes, a movie comes across my desk that’s so completely different from everything else that you can’t help like it, just for it’s difference, and it for that, among many other reasons that I really enjoyed the new movie, Road To Victory.

Here’s the story: Elliot, a college football player, has taken a blow to the head that has affected his endocrine system. Affected it in such a dramatic way that he can no longer get erections…yes, that’s what I said. The movie chronicles Elliot’s journey, his trials as he see doctor after doctor, and, ultimately, the decision he has to make between a potential professional football career, fame and fortune or a normal life.

While the topic itself is incredibly uncomfortable, according to statistics, it’s a problem that a significant amount of men deal with daily, so making it the subject of a movie is both smart and brave. Writer/director Mike Reilly plays Elliot as a man with a problem, but not in the "lifetime movies" way, where a man with any type of sexual dysfunction is usually angry and overly aggressive, Mike plays Elliot as a man who’s confused and humiliated, but not angry. The real strength of the movie lies with the relationship between Elliot and his stripper girlfriend, Anna, played by Julia Anderson. The relationship is very different from anything I’ve seen on film, it’s nearly a role reversal of sorts, with Elliot seemingly uninterested in sex and Anna overly sexual, the two actors have such a great on screen chemistry that you find yourself hoping to see them come through these adversities and ultimately wind up together! The entire cast is very good, but it’s really Elliot and Anna that draw you in and, finally, if their onscreen relationship doesn’t work, the whole movie would fall apart, and Mike and Julia are both tremendous in their roles!

I’m giving Road To Victory four out of four cigars, because, while I’m usually not a ‘relationship movie’ guy, this movie draws you in slowly and then keeps you involved until the end, and the ending is truly poignant and, for a movie with a message, it just doesn’t get much better than this. If you’ve ever had to make a difficult decision, then you’ll empathize with Road To Victory, if you’d like to find out how to see this great movie for yourself, head over to the Road To Victory web page, there you can see what festivals Road To Victory will be at and where you can get a copy for yourself. So, until next time, when we’ll talk about other male shortcomings, which will really be a list that my wife gave me, remember that the best movies are bad movies.