Story of a promising high school basketball star and his relationships with two brothers, one a drug dealer and the other a former basketball star fallen on hard times and now employed as a security guard.
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Billy and Sydney think they're the best basketball hustlers in town, so when they join forces, nothing can stop them, except each other. To add to their problems, Billy owes money and is being chased by a pair of gangster types. Written by
After Billy Hoyle hustles Sidney Deane on the basketball court, Deane offers Billy a proposition about teaming up to hustle the courts of Los Angeles. They are a great team, they are in fact wonderful players, but egos and greed are sure to become a problem, oh and Billy has some rather unsavoury characters after him to return a debt he owes. Can the boys resolve their differences? Can they keep their devoted women happy? All will be revealed in White Men Can't Jump.
White Men Can't Jump is a fine sports movie, offering up more than just a basic sport heart, it's funny, sly and really a rather effective piece of drama. The basketball scenes are very well handled by director Ron Shelton, with slow motion spins and beady drips of sweat glistening in the heat, and the chemistry between Woody Harrelson (Billy) and Wesley Snipes (Sidney) is first class, but really it's the power of Shelton's writing that makes this a most engaging picture (see also Bull Durham & the similarly undervalued Tin Cup).
After following these two guys thru their very rocky relationship you get to a point where you feel that we are about to wander down formula road, but Shelton pulls a trick to make the final last quarter an excellent, none conformity piece of film, one that judging by the less than favourable rating on this particular site, has not been wholly appreciated. Shame that, because other than Rosie Perez doing her best to annoy the viewers to death as Billy's suffering girlfriend Gloria Clemente, White Men Can't Jump is one of the better sports movies of the 90s. 7.5/10
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