George Lopez leads an incredible cast in the inspiring film Spare Parts, on DVD (plus Digital), Digital HD and On Demand from Pantelion and Lionsgate Home Entertainment.
When four wildly different high schoolers team up to enter a robotics competition against the nation’s top tech colleges, no one believes they have a chance—no one but Fredi (Lopez), their new substitute teacher. As Fredi challenges his students to be the best they can be, they show him the power of never giving up, in an unforgettable tale that shines with heart, humor, and hope.
There’s an entire genre of movies dedicated to the Hollywood retellings of true stories about underdog successes. Typically, these films are about sports teams overcoming the odds, but this 2015-release, Spare Parts, decides to slightly deviate from the norm. Instead of an athletic competition, Spare Parts is one of the few of these kinds of movies that focuses on an intellectual contest. I myself have no personal interest in sports, so that fact alone had me more interested in the film and the story behind it.
Spare Parts is based on the achievements of a group of teenagers from Carl Hayden High School, in Phoenix, Arizona, who beat out top ranking universities (including MIT) in a national robotics
competition. The story, originally published in Wired magazine, can be read here: http://archive.wired.com/wired/archive/13.04/robot.html
Unsurprisingly, there were a number of Hollywood liberties taken with the movie version of this story:
the most noteworthy is the fact that the real team had two coaches who were condensed into one character, Fredi Cameron, played by George Lopez, for the purposes of the film. One thing true to the original tale, however, is the fact that all four kids portrayed were illegal immigrants at the time of, and leading up, to the competition. Both this, and the low budget the group has to work with to make their robot, make up the obstacles and challenges they face over the course of the film.
The way the stories of the individual boys are portrayed and their dynamic as a group is interesting and, sometimes, thought-provoking. Additionally, though it isn’t a major part of the film, I found the accompanying soundtrack to be entertaining and a good listen.
Spare Parts blends a captivating true story with a decent portrayal and some good humor, in true underdog fashion. And even though it’s a formula that we’ve seen time and time again, with an ending you can already see coming, you can enjoy the journey, and I recommend it as a good movie to watch.The all-star ensemble cast includes George Lopez, Jamie Lee Curtis, Carlos PenaVega and Marisa Tomei. From the director of Soul Surfer, Spare Parts is available on DVD for the suggested retail price of $19.98 (as of the writing of this post it is selling for $12.87 on Amazon.com).
A media sample was received for the purpose of this post.
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