Ken Martinson - Marching.com
"A new independent film delivers an emotional, insightful look into the student marching band experience. "
"Some of the best moments feature students sharing from-the-heart comments about how important band has become in their lives. The power of belonging is evident when students tell their fellow members that band has helped them overcome fears and deal with life issues. "
"The team's experience is evident in the 94-minute film. This is a high-quality production, with sweeping camera shots and a perfectly synchronized score. The soundtrack incorporates both soaring orchestrations and indie rock tunes that would be worthy of a separate release on CD. The film is expertly paced, with highs and lows that will move you along an emotional rollercoaster. One moment you choke up during a kid's speech, then you laugh out loud during on-the-street interviews where non-band folks try to define band terminology. "
"The humor and variety broaden the film's appeal to make it entertaining for people outside of the band activity. The film takes fun, unexpected turns, such as the scene showing animals from the nearby zoo as they respond to the music. Another interesting segment is when drill designer Michael Gaines explains his craft. The corresponding video becomes a split screen showing Gaines' original computerized drill formations along with high-camera video of the band performing the same drill. "
David M. Marshall
Director of Bands: Somerset High School - Somerset, MA
Director/President of the East Bay Summer Wind Ensemble - Bristol, RI
"From The 50 Yard Line" is a movie that every student, parent, educator and school administrator MUST see! This film is able to sum up in an extraordinary hour and a half documentary, the reason why every music educator, music student and parent/supporter makes the sacrifices that they all make for the love of music and why music should be an integrated part of every school's curriculum across the country! "From The 50 Yardline" will become a motivation tool that every music educator can use to motivate his or her students with and community can use to push for the reinstatement or advancement of their local music program. Director, Doug Lantz and his crew have introduced the country to the world of the marching arts and how it can better a student socially, emotionally and academically. Through this awakening, he might just help our political leaders across the country realize how the choices that they have made over the past twenty years have adversely affected or eliminated our school music programs, music's crucial and vital importance in the development of our children and inspire them to help save music education in America!
Deborah Ground Buckner - AnE Vibe
4 Stars **** (4 out of 4)
"From over two hundred hours of footage, this feature film length has emerged, telling its story with the pacing of a spirited half-time show. "
"Watching the marching performance come together is a treat in and of itself, but at the same time, it is a joy to watch the confidence and self-assurance of each student grow. A particularly impressionable scene is the “sharing session,” a tradition of the Centerville band, where each student has an opportunity to express his or her feelings about the band and how involvement has affected life in many ways."
"From the 50 Yard Line will likely become a favorite of high school band directors and former marchers, but it also carries an important message for those who make the decisions about school funding and the existence of a music program."
Band Director Review
"This film will lift your spirits and rejuvenate your faith in Generation Next. Seeing how emotionally invested the kids were and how they dedicated themselves tirelessly to learning complicated moves that require both physical and mental dexterity was riveting. You don't have to have been in
band to appreciate this film."
Division Chairperson, The Arts
Columbus International Film and Video Festival, aka The Chris Awards
It was FANTASTIC! I absolutely loved the documentary. My friend and I drove out from Waterford to go see it and it was a lot like our own band experience... well except for the fact that Centerville Jazz Band is about 4 times our size. It really depicts all the hard work that gets put into a season's show, and the emotional importance of marching band to the members, schools, and communities. I would absolutely recommend this documentary to anyone even remotely interested. :-)
"From a parent's perspective, I want to thank you for letting us into what it is our kids experience on a level our kids are unable to share with us. While my daughters and I have an amazing relationship, I could never understand the excitement they would try to share with me, especially when recounting going through the air-lock at Grand Nationals. I just couldn't picture it and now I don't have to. I've seen it! I know I've provided my girls an amazing opportunity to be part of a program that is so much more than playing an instrument in a marching band and it was so great to see that brought to life on our big screen."
Linda - Band Parent
Ronald Reagan High School - Benefit Screening
San Antonio, Texas
"If you do not cry at some point during this film, you are not human!"
Swansea Bay, Wales, UK
"Good documentaries find their humanity and force by telling remarkable stories, sometimes in places that are not obvious breeding grounds for passion, artistry and life-changing happenings. From Director Doug Lantz and Producer Dave Johnson comes this uplifting documentary...fun and life affirming."
"A fine piece of work combining all that youthful optimism with a stiff dose of realism"
Director, Avignon International Film Festival
That was such an awesome film! It brought back so many memories of my marching band experiences and I'm proud to say that I was at the World Premiere
:-) Again, awesome work and I can't wait for the dvd ;-)
John - Michigan
"From the 50 Yard Line" did a great job of portraying the common emotions, feelings, and life lessons that students in band programs across the country can relate to! This documentary could be a very useful tool for spreading the knowledge and support for class act band programs such as those in the video.
Joe Eck - Music Education Major - Future Band Director
I am the proud drum major of a high school marching band from a small town in Missouri.
I just wanted to say that I drove almost 2 hours to attend the screening at the Kansas Film Festival. I ABOSLUTELY LOVED IT!!!!
It's such a relief that a film like this can be made to help "outsiders" understand what it's like to be a part of the band -- even if just for 100 minutes in the theater. Explaining the terms such as weapons, battery and pit made me realize how much of a band geek I really am. Now I just need to figure out how to explain DCI to my mom. haha!
I'm a senior in high school this year and this movie really helped me decide whether or not to be in a college marching band... Congratulations and best of luck to you.
Rachel - Missouri
This is a fun and inspirational look into the real motivating forces of thousands of people involved with marching bands across America that is
rarely seen or understood by those outside of the activity.
Ryan Lamb - Music Education Major - Future Band Director
I saw your movie this evening! (Duke University Benefit Concert). It was so totally awesome. You did a great job capturing all the emotion that comes with being in marching band. There were so many times when I could relate. I think this is gonna be a big hit with the marching band community. I really want to see it again.
Kirby - Chapel Hill H.S., North Carolina