Paterno (2018) Review


Joe Paterno was the most successful coach in college football history but when Penn State’s child sexual abuse scandal of Jerry Sandusky everything was about to come crashing down.


Joe Paterno was head coach at Penn State University for 61 years and at the age of 84 he was still going strong within the system. In 2005 he was asked to retire but he refused he was then eventually sacked for failing to raise any concerns about Jerry Sandusky who worked as his assistant coach for many years.

Sandusky was under investigation for horrific accusations of child sexual abuse. Reporter Sara Ganim was the person who really pushed to uncover the allegations and attempting to protect those wanting to speak out. Aaron Fisher was victim 1 within the articles and his identity is leaked through rumours and he is attacked in school by other students.

It is a very tough film to watch as you become extremely frustrated very quickly by the people who had either seen or heard things and did nothing to protect innocent young boys. This really is something that is just horrible and seems to happen across the different cases like this one that have come out all around the world.

The truly frightening thing in this case Paterno, Graham Spanier (school president) Gary Schultz (Vice President) and Tim Curley (athletic director) all were either told things about Sandusky or had even witnessed something happening! They failed to report the abuse to the correct authorities and that really is so sickening. How could anyone possibly do that, with something that is the worst thing to happen to a child.

Very difficult to watch also means it is very difficult to review, the subject matter is horrific yet it is also important to show that people need support. The reporter was the only person that seemed to really care about justice being served. Something I found interesting was that then it was mentioned of things relating back further into the 60s/70s but I haven’t really been able to find anything out about that after.

Riley Keough was the stand out performance in the whole film and that is something that was never going to be easy with Al Pacino to compete with. I just felt everything about it was perfect for the subject matter, as the journalist who cared about the victims as well as just getting a story.

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