Logline: Twelve year old Kyle Thomas is forced to take control of his own destiny, in order to save his fathers life.
Kyle Thomas is an only child in a typical military family. His father Eric, a marine helicopter pilot, has served 12 years with the Corp. Unfortunately, Eric’s jobs has kept him a little too busy to be involved in his son’s life, especially his soccer. Eric was a very good midfielder and played in Europe before college and the Marines. After a great deal of prodding from his wife and son about the escalating danger in the Middle East, Eric reluctantly agrees to retire early and serve as a consultant to the DOD and continue coaching Kyle's team. Ninety four more days and counting.
After Eric becomes the coach for Kyle’s club team, he is suddenly called away after a suicide bombing at a barracks kills six pilots.. Before a critical rescue mission, Kyle and his father visit on the phone. Eric, while looking at a calendar with his rotation date circled and Kyle's teams assumed finals match up against the state champs, tells his son; "when you beat the Rangers, I'll be coming home" The line goes dead and those are the last words Kyle hears from his father.
Kyle’s life is abruptly turned upside down when his father ends up missing in action days later. Kyle must somehow find the strength to overcome his perceived control over the events unfolding around him. He has only one chance to bring his father home, and it requires his team defeating a team who has not lost in over two years and easily defeated Kyle's team, the Wave, earlier that year.
Similar Stories - Life is Beautiful
There are many similarities in the balance and stages of The Net Effect and Life is Beautiful. The bond between a father and son is single most common thread between the two stories. In the case of The Net Effect, the son is handed the burden of saving his father, protecting his mother and bringing back his old coach or overcoming the obstacles introduced by his new coach, in order to save his father.
The father is the protagonist in Life is Beautiful and overcomes extraordinary circumstances to protect his son from the reality of his environment. Where, Kyle (TNE) is caught between reality and the perceived control of his families fate, much like the boy in Life is Beautiful who is playing a game of survival.
In TNE, the father, Eric, is providing heroic support for his comrades when destiny hands him a situation that jeopardizes his opportunity to be a father, ever again. Separated by continents, both father and son do everything in their power to overcome each obstacle stopping them from being a whole family again.
Indie Movie Produced in 1997. Worldwide Box Office: $229,400,000 Worldwide DVD: $196,700,000
Similar Stories - The Sandlot
The innocence of youth with a sports wrapper. Baseball was used to frame the story about a boy overcoming the challenges a child faces in a new environment, where they don't fit in. The common ground (baseball) became the sport that allowed the lead an opportunity to find his place in his new world. This story line resonated with hundreds of thousands of athletes and kids who have lived through a similar experience.
The Sandlot offered a balance of personalities (team) that created a potential connection with the kids of the world by having at least one player, someone they could relate to in the story. Regardless, if they were the short kid that didn't fit in or the super athlete that finds sports to be a natural fit. The Net Effect offers the same opportunity for its audience, with a balance of players and personalities.
In TNE, Kyle's sport (soccer) is the vehicle that both unites and divides the team as Kyle searches for the control he needs to determine his fathers fate. The bond of kinship is nurtured, challenged, and finally realized as the players and coach move toward an impossible task.
The Net Effect preserves the innocence of youth through light moments and humor to ensure that every audience member remains engaged, regardless of age. TNE is not a sports movie, but a family drama, that leverages a sport as a vehicle to help tell the story.
Indie Movie Produced in 1993. Worldwide Box Office: $38,600,000 Worldwide DVD: $232,100,000