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harlanbh

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16 out of 23 people found the following review useful:
Character and Chess are King, 21 January 2014
9/10

While this may seem to most "yet another Chess movie," I assure you it is not. Life of a King is more closely related to the movie, "Fresh." These movies use the game to discuss the deeper challenges facing the most vulnerable population in America. They invite people who are disconnected from these issues to use the game as a portal of understanding. The story portrayed in Life of a King could have been told without any mention of the game of Chess. Mr. Brown's redemption is played out in urban neighborhoods every day. We could have exchanged the game of Chess with basketball, golf, tennis, football or any other tool used by a responsible motivated adult to mentor lost youth. Yet, America seems to be more receptive to and in need of a different perspective on black youth. Yes, these kids have brains, soul, heart and character. This is a movie which highlights all of the above. The Life of a King is anchored by an enduring hope in the goodwill and potential of children. When many have lost hope in this generation of children, portrayed by Cuba Gooding Jr., this movie is a needed reminder of what is missing; a champion for hope. No, this movie is not filled with the high intensity and hyper realism so popular today. And I am grateful for that. As a matter of fact, I was so grateful for the throwback 60's track that opens up the movie. It's a foreshadowing message that the answer to today's problem might not be something new. It might not require computers, or high stakes testing. It might not involve a "New School Transformation Model for Student Empowerment Through Advanced Study and Understanding with STEM." It might just involve men with passion getting involved with their neighborhood boys. It might just be a character development initiative. Maybe, it's just that simple.