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The Film 'Race': Block Out All The Noise

Race is the 2016 motion picture about African American athlete Jesse Owens, who won four gold medals at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. In one scene, the track team, both white and black athletes, are in the locker room just finishing getting dressed. Coach Larry Snyder is admonishing Owens for losing focus during practice as some of the football players shouted racial slurs. Coach Snyder tells Owens, "You can't get distracted, you understand?"

Then the football team's head coach and some players enter the locker room. The football coach tells Snyder: "All right, Larry. Finish this up now. I got boys who need to shower."

Snyder: "Yeah, one second coach. I'm not quite through yet."

The football coach tells him: "Larry, hustle these niggers out of here. You hear me?"

Snyder ignores him and continues to speak to his team: "If you get your head turned by a few gorillas in warm-up pads here at home, how are you going to hold up in Michigan?"

The football coach and players are offended: "Who's he calling gorillas?" But Snyder keeps ignoring the football team and focusing entirely on his athletes, who are watching the angry football players: "Hey, look at me! A lot of people show up for the Big Ten meet. Not all of them are going to be on our side. You understand? Do you?"

The football coach and his players start yelling louder. Owens and his teammates can't help having their attention switched from their coach to the angry football players and back. Coach Snyder continues, oblivious to the clamor: "You gotta learn to block it all out! It's just noise! That's all this is! All it is, is noise. You hear me? They will love you, or they will hate you. Does not matter. 'Cause either way, when you're out there, you're on your own." He looks directly at Owens. "Jesse! Do you hear me?"

The camera focuses on Owens. After a couple of long seconds the clamor is silenced (signifying the silence inside Owens's mind). Owens says: "Yeah, yeah, Coach. I hear you." A slight, knowing smile is formed on his lips.

"Good. All right, come on. Let's go. You heard (football) Coach. They need the locker room."

Chapter 5: 29 minutes 18 seconds - 30 minutes 23 seconds. (Alert: profanity exactly 5 seconds after end of clip.)

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