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The Longest Yard (2005 film)

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The Longest Yard
Theatrical release poster
Directed byPeter Segal
Screenplay bySheldon Turner
Based onThe Longest Yard
by Tracy Keenan Wynn
Albert S. Ruddy
Produced byJack Giarraputo
CinematographyDean Semler
Edited byJeff Gourson
Music byTeddy Castellucci
Distributed by
Release date
  • May 27, 2005 (2005-05-27)
Running time
113 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$90 million[1]
Box office$191.5 million[1]

The Longest Yard is a 2005 American sports comedy film directed by Peter Segal and written by Sheldon Turner. A remake of 1974's The Longest Yard, it stars Adam Sandler as a washed-up former professional American football quarterback who goes to prison and is forced to assemble a team to play against the guards. The film co-stars Chris Rock, James Cromwell, Nelly, William Fichtner and Burt Reynolds, who played Sandler's role in the original.

It was released by Paramount Pictures in the United States and Sony Pictures Releasing–under the Columbia Pictures label–in other territories on May 27, 2005.


Paul Crewe is a former National Football League quarterback who was accused of shaving points. Though it was never confirmed, he was placed on federal probation for five years. One night, dissatisfied with his life, he gets drunk during a party and goes joyriding through San Diego in his girlfriend Lena's Bentley, causing a high-speed police chase and car crash. His probation is revoked and he is sentenced to three years in prison.

Instead of being imprisoned in California, he gets transferred to Texas, thanks to the influence and contacts of Warden Rudolph Hazen, an avid football fan. Wishing to boost his prison's reputation for future elections as State Governor, he uses threats and confinement in a hot box to coerce Crewe into helping the prison guards' football team, led by the sadistic Captain Knauer. Crewe informs Hazen that what Hazen's team needs is a tune-up game to boost the guards' confidence, and is therefore coerced to form an inmate team to play against the guards. He does so with the help of a newfound friend, Caretaker. They start off with a poorly organized team, before being noticed by another prisoner, former college football star Nate Scarborough, who decides to help coach the team by gathering several intimidating inmates as a boost to the team's strength. Initially, the team is weak, but after witnesing how Magget is intimidated with racial attacks by the guards, Deacon along with his gang join Crew and Nate with their training, thus improving the overall quality of the team. Hazen and the guards hinder Crewe's team in several ways, such as flooding the field, but they overcome the obstacles. Meanwhile, inmate Unger spies on the activities of the inmates and after being pressured by the guards, rigs Crewe’s radio with an explosive. Caretaker unknowingly enters the cell to give a photo gift to Crewe, but is killed when he tries to turn the dial on the radio. On game day, the inmates are revitalized in the wake of Caretaker's murder when they find he used his connections to his cousin at Reebok to supply the inmates with quality uniforms and gear with the team name "Mean Machine". Crewe deals with some difficulty getting the inmates to focus on winning the game rather than assaulting the guards during opening play, stating that a loss to them would be a far bigger mark of shame to the guards than any physical brutality they could inflict. Though the guards take an early lead, even having the referees call bogus penalties on them (which Crewe resolves by throwing the ball twice into the referees' genitals to send them a message to rule fairly), by the end of the first half, the Mean Machines tie the game.

During halftime, Hazen threatens to implicate Crewe in Caretaker's murder and increase his prison sentence to 25 years unless Crewe purposely throws the game. During the opening of the second half, Crewe deliberately throws the game and abandons his teammates despite their efforts to catch up in scoring. After earning a three touchdown lead on the Mean Machines, the Guards brutally injure the inmates, spurring Crewe to re-enter the field. The inmates initially refuse to help him, allowing him to be sacked twice, but on 4th down and long, Crewe completes a 1st down on his own. Crewe confesses that he threw the game that got him cut from the NFL to cover debts he owed to "worse people". Informing the team of Hazen's threats, he declares that he would stay with the inmates rather than betray Caretaker's memory. The Mean Machines rally behind Crewe and with a decisive two-point conversion, they win the game by a one-point margin.

Hazen admonishes Knauer for losing a fixed game and notices that Crewe is heading towards the exit. Eagerly implying Crewe is trying to escape, Hazen orders that Crewe be shot. Knauer hesitates and at the last moment realizes that Crewe is only picking up the game football. Crewe returns it to Hazen, telling him to "stick it in [his] trophy case". Deacon and Battle then dump Gatorade on Hazen, while Crewe and Scarbrough go to get information on where Unger is so that psychotic inmate Switowski can deal with him.






The movie was filmed primarily at the New Mexico State Penitentiary on Route 14, Santa Fe, New Mexico.[2] The football game at the end of the movie was filmed at Murdock Stadium at the El Camino College in Torrance, California. The car chase scene was filmed in Long Beach, California. Other parts of the movie were filmed in Los Angeles and New Mexico.[citation needed] The golf course scene was filmed at Lost Canyons Golf Club in Simi Valley, California.[3]


The official soundtrack, which consisted entirely of hip-hop music, was released on May 24, 2005, by Derrty Ent. Records and Universal Records. It peaked at #11 on the Billboard 200 and #10 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.

The film itself contains a mixture of hip-hop and rock music, featuring music by Creedence Clearwater Revival, Norman Greenbaum, and AC/DC, among others.


It was released on May 27, 2005, in the United States and September 9, 2005, in the United Kingdom. It was released the same day as DreamWorks Animation's family friendly film Madagascar, also starring Chris Rock.


Box office[edit]

The Longest Yard did well at the box office. Its $47.6 million opening weekend was the largest of Sandler's career and only second to The Day After Tomorrow as the largest opening by a movie that was not #1. The film would go on to gross $158.1 million in the United States and Canada and $190 million worldwide. It was the highest-grossing film produced by MTV Films, until it was surpassed by Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters.

Critical response [edit]

The Longest Yard has received mixed reviews. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 31% based on 170 reviews, with an average rating of 4.8/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "This Yard has some laughs but missing from this remake is the edginess of the original."[4] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 48 out of 100, based on 35 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[5] Audiences polled by CinemaScore, gave the film a grade of "A−" on an A+ to F scale.[6]

Roger Ebert, in the critical minority with this title, gave it a "Thumbs Up", defending it later in his Chicago Sun-Times review as a film that "...more or less achieves what most of the people attending it will expect." In the print review, Ebert beseeches his readers to "...seek out a movie you could have an interesting conversation about", citing films not in wide release such as Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist and Kontroll, until finally encouraging his readers to "drop any thought of seeing anything else instead" if they can see Crash.[7]


The film earned Chris Rock a BET Comedy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Theatrical Film.[citation needed]

Burt Reynolds earned a nomination at the 26th Golden Raspberry Awards for Worst Supporting Actor for his performance in both this film and The Dukes of Hazzard.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "The Longest Yard (2005)". Box Office Mojo. Archived from the original on September 6, 2020. Retrieved February 27, 2018.
  2. ^ "Santa Fe prison becomes an economic star". Bizjournals.com. Archived from the original on July 19, 2014. Retrieved November 27, 2021.
  3. ^ "Filming at Lost Canyons Golf Club" Archived 2015-02-06 at the Wayback Machine. Lost Canyons. December 1, 2014.
  4. ^ "The Longest Yard". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. 27 May 2005. Archived from the original on 23 September 2022. Retrieved August 9, 2019.
  5. ^ "The Longest Yard". Metacritic. Archived from the original on October 3, 2022. Retrieved August 9, 2019.
  6. ^ "CinemaScore". CinemaScore. Archived from the original on 2018-12-20. Retrieved 2015-07-15.
  7. ^ Ebert, Roger (May 26, 2005). "'Yard' catches an outside pass". Chicago Sun-Times. RogerEbert.com. Archived from the original on March 24, 2022. Retrieved March 24, 2022.

External links[edit]