Biographical epic of the controversial and influential Black Nationalist leader, from his early life and career as a small-time gangster, to his ministry as a member of the Nation of Islam and his assassination.
Tells the story of Jesus Shuttlesworth, the most sought after high school basketball prospect in the nation. Jesus and his dream to make it to the big ranks in professional basketball are overshadowed by his father, Jake, who is spending his life in prison for killing Jesus' mother. Written by
Spike Lee originally wanted Kobe Bryant to play the part of Jesus Shuttlesworth. While Kobe liked the script and the idea of working with Spike, he had just finished his rookie year in the NBA (the 1996-97) and had shot several airballs in a brutal playoff loss by the Lakers to the Utah Jazz, and planned a workout program that would help him maintain his strength through the longer NBA seasons (a major adjustment, as Kobe went straight from high school to the pros). So he told Spike the summer of 1997 was too important to spend time making the film, and Spike promptly sought out Ray Allen, who quickly accepted the lead role. See more »
In here there's some money. Get some clothiong, toothpaste, deodorant, personal effects, whatever have you. Take a shower! Wash your ass!
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A real victory for film making, but not without it's drawbacks.
It's hard to write a review for a sports movie, there's just a different standard for them. Their plots are usually contrived to a level of laser precision. They seem almost designed to make you feel good, which while admirable in the scheme of life, just isn't good film making.
For us sports fans, a sports film that comes across as 'above average' instantly becomes classic. This hardly seems fair, just because the film had some scenes of athletic competion doesn't mean it shouldn't have to face the same standards as the rest of the silver screen.
But this is a movie that goes against that grain. It's sincerely good by anyone's standards. The acting, even that of NBA Star Ray Allen's, is on-par with anything else out there. Bonus points for any film where Denzel Washington isn't playing Denzel Washington(even though I enjoy many of those films).
Beautifully shot, the cinematography throws a pinpoint assist to the script and makes normally great scenes memorable and occasionally transcendent. The film hits with such power that it really exposes other sports movies for the fluff that they really are. Spike Lee manages to create a film that, while deep in the world of basketball, still can appeal to a non-sports fan. Unlike the 2006 USA Team, this movie is destined for gold! And, my apologies for the "Assist" thing, there's really no excuse. Same the the "Gold" thing. Still, watch the movie. 8 of 10.
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