Friday Night Lights


Friday Night Lights

Critics Consensus

An acute survey of the football-obsessed heartland that succeeds as both a stirring drama and a rousing sports movie.



Total Count: 172


Audience Score

User Ratings: 185,755
User image

Friday Night Lights Photos

Movie Info

A drama that chronicles the entire 1988 season of the Permian High Panthers of Odessa, Texas, with football players, coaches, mothers, fathers, pastors, boosters, fans and families struggling with ongoing personal conflicts while the team fights for a state championship. A town for sale, Odessa, Texas has seen better days--the financial bust evident in its boarded-up shops and broken lives. Yet one hope sustains the community where, once a week during the fall, the town and its dreams come alive beneath the dazzling and disorienting Friday night-lights. When the Permian High Panthers take to the field. In a city where economic uncertainty has eroded the spirit of its inhabitants, nearly everyone seeks comfort in the religion of the Friday night ritual, where the unfulfilled dreams of an entire community are shifted onto the shoulder pads of a team of high-school athletes.

Watch it now


Billy Bob Thornton
as Coach Gaines
Lucas Black
as Mike Winchell
Garrett Hedlund
as Don Billingsley
Derek Luke
as James `Boobie' Miles
Jay Hernandez
as Brian Chavez
Lee Jackson
as Ivory Christian
Lee Thompson Young
as Chris Comer
Tim McGraw
as Charles Billingsley
Grover Coulson
as L.V. Miles
Connie Britton
as Sharon Gaines
Morgan Farris
as Jennifer Gaines
Laine Kelly
as Comer's Girlfriend
Gavin Grazer
as Trapper
Turk Pipkin
as Skip Baldwin
Brad Leland
as John Aubrey
Lillian Langford
as Nancy Aubrey
Buddy Hale
as Booster
B.T. Stone
as Slammin' Sammy
Wade L. Johnston
as Coach Miller
Rick Herod
as Coach McCutcheon
Paul Wright
as Coach Belew
Julius Tennon
as Coach James
Dennis Hill
as Coach Harper
Timothy Walter
as Coach Vonner
Robert Scott Smith
as Coach Smith
Kenneth Plunk
as Coach Plunk
Josh Berry
as Coach Campbell
Branson Washburn
as Coach Washburn
David Johnson
as Coach Johnson
Roy Williams
as Midland Lee Assistant Coach
Ty Law
as Graf
Tommy G. Kendrick
as Odessa Doctor
Ken Farmer
as Booster
Katherine Willis
as Booster Wife
Angie Bolling
as Booster Wife
Charles Sanders
as Buddy's Burgers Manager
Barry Sykes
as Permian Play-by-Play Announcer
Clay Kennedy
as Permian Color Announcer
Lewis B. Johnson
as Carter Play-by-Play Announcer
J.D. Hawkins
as Carter Play-by-Play Announcer
John Patrick Hayden
as Permian Booth Coach
Chris Palmer
as Permian Booth Coach
Kyle-Scott Jackson
as Scott Jackson-Carter Booth Coach
C. Anthony "Charles" Jackson
as Carter Booth Coach
Kippy Brown
as Carter Booth Coach
Cleveland "Chick" Harris
as Carter Booth Coach
Billy Melvin Thomas
as Carter Assistant Coach
Kammerin Hunt
as Carter Assistant Coach
Gary Mack Griffin
as Marshall High School Coach
Randy Brinlee
as Marshall Game Referee
Dan Rankin
as Cooper Game End Zone Official
Tim Crowley
as Carter Game Referee
Harvey L. Jeffries
as Carter Game Official
Tiki Davis
as Carter Co-Captain - Baird
Harry Everett Smith
as Carter Quarterback - Whitaker
Peter Harrell Jr.
as C.C. Russeau
Kevin Page
as John Wilkins
Brady Coleman
as Jerald McClary
Stephen Bishop
as Loie Harris
Bob Richardson
as Marvin Edwards
Mark Donaldson
as State Trooper
Aisha Schliessler
as Cheerleader
Evan Bernard
as Drunk Driver
Rutherford Cravens
as Kansas Wesleyan Recruiter
Wayne Hanawalt
as Kansas Wesleyan Recruiter
Brian Thornton
as Recruiter
Sam Austin
as Recruiter
Mark Nutter
as Recruiter
Jeff Gibbs
as Journalist Jim
Robert Flores
as Reporter
Terry Parks
as Skip Baldwin's Cameraman
Talon Smith
as Young Kid
Taylor Sawyers
as Young Kid
Bradley Lisman
as Young Kid
Aaron Babino
as Football Player
Dean Baldwin
as Football Player
Ben Bronson
as Football Player
Sunny Byrd
as Football Player
John Clark
as Football Player
Bobby Doherty
as Football Player
Chris Fisher
as Football Player
Cedric Foster
as Football Player
Corey Hargers
as Football Player
Tavis Harvey
as Football Player
Deshaun Hill
as Football Player
Ryan Jacobs
as Football Player
Nick Jester
as Football Player
Mike Jones
as Football Player
Russell Tyrone Jones
as Football Player
Mark Llewellyn
as Football Player
Jon Luke
as Football Player
O.J. McClintock
as Football Player
Robert Nguyen
as Football Player
Dewayne Patmon
as Football Player
Everick Rawls
as Football Player
Bret Robin
as Football Player
Ray Ross
as Football Player
Chad L. Stevens
as Football Player
Travis Thompson
as Football Player
Matt Trissel
as Football Player
Brandon Tully
as Football Player
Darrick Wallace
as Football Player
Steven Rogers
as Football Player
Joseph Norman
as Football Player
View All

News & Interviews for Friday Night Lights

Critic Reviews for Friday Night Lights

All Critics (172) | Top Critics (44) | Fresh (140) | Rotten (32)

Audience Reviews for Friday Night Lights

  • Dec 02, 2011
    Friday Night Lights is a brilliant sports drama that focuses heavily on its characters, which ultimately makes for Peter Berg's best film. It has emotion and teriffic acting, making for a memorable experience. It also inspired and brilliant television show, so it count as a great one in my book.
    Bradley W Super Reviewer
  • Jun 20, 2011
    Mike Winchell: This is for the state championship. I love all of ya'll, baby. I love all of ya'll.  "Hope Comes Alive on Friday Night" As far as football movies or sports movies in general go, Friday Night Lights sets itself apart from most. I don't know if I've seen another movie that captures the emotion of high school athletics as well as Friday Night Lights did. Anyone who's ever played a high school sport knows the emotion that's involved. That last game of the season and for about 95% of the players; the last game of their lives.  The State Championship sequence is highly manipulative. I'll be the first to admit that. Everything about it is manipulative. But it's undeniably well-made, emotional, and powerful. For many of the players, it is the biggest moment of their life. They aren't going to have another day where 55,000 people are screaming and their only a touchdown away from a state championship.  The characters are all well developed and are all deeply moving in their own way. Billingsley can't hold on to the football, but he fights through that and ends up being one of the teams best players. Winchell is a hard working and tough quarterback who never gives up on himself or his team. Boobie is the most talented player, but also the most cocky. That is until he goes down for the season. He rallies around his team even though he can't play, and it's killing him. Hell even Billingsley's dad is moving. Yeah he's a piece of crap to his son at the start. But he grows to be a good dad at the end in a pretty emotional shot. We can't hear what he says to his son, but we really don't need to. If you love sports and know the emotions that are involved; this movie cannot be missed. It's really a spectacular look at one season and how it can affect a town in so many ways.
    Melvin W Super Reviewer
  • May 27, 2011
    Underrated as one of great sports movies ever, "Friday Night Lights" succeeds on two levels: gives you great action sequences on the field and believable characters off of it. For one, it beautifully juxtaposes the joy and pain of the feverish support for a local football team in a small town that offers no escape. On the other hand, it also contains some of the hardest-hitting football action ever committed to film. Throw some strong, in-your-face performances into the mix and you've got one of the best movies of the last ten years.
    Matt F Super Reviewer
  • May 21, 2011
    If they do a football film on Alabama Crimson Tide then I say get Bill Thornton to play Nick Saban too. Come to think of it, a deal of football coaches look, to an extent, like Saban. I can just see a team of British scientists searching through to deepest heart of Africa and discovering a whole hidden tribe of sports-playing Africans being yelled at by a race of Nick Sabans. I can just see a whole lot of Auburn fans out there saying "I knew he was the missing link." But enough about Saban Americans, let's touch on this film, which suffers from a lack of development, some inconsistancies, a bit of a let-down and cop-out ending and slowness. I know, a slow sports movie. Crazy isn't it? In spite of this, "Friday Night Lights" features a solid soundtrack, strong characters and fantastic performances to make it an ultimately rousing drama.
    Cameron J Super Reviewer

Friday Night Lights Quotes

News & Features