Set on the backdrop of Philadelphia's famed Overbrook High School, we track the lives of the nations number one high school basketball player Sergio Taylor as he deals with the early pressures of hood fame.
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Set in West Philadelphia, born-and-raised basketball star Sergio Taylor deals with the early pressures of fame. Alongside older brother June, who lost his own hoop dreams to the streets to provide for the family after their father's death, and sister Jackie , whose own musical ambitions are sidetracked by love, Sergio faces life-altering decisions on the tough streets of Philly.Written by
I attended the press junket for "Brotherly Love" and writer/director Jamal Hill couldn't have said it better, it's as if he read my mind, in that it's been a while since movies like this have graced our screen. Lately, we only rely on Tyler Perry to deliver us movies about black culture, not just his Madea movies obviously, the ones he produces as well, but for stories about struggling teenagers, it's been a long, long, while. Of course, John Singleton's "Boyz N The Hood" set the bar really high, but I think what Jamal Hill has accomplished with BROTHERLY LOVE is worth noticing. The quality may be very indie but the story and the characters are all too familiar.
Set in West Philadelphia, which I've visited a few times in the past. With the backdrop of the famed Overbrook high school, BROTHERLY LOVE focuses on a family. Older brother June (Cory Hardrict) who had to give up his B-ball dream and become 'the father' when their father died resulting in their mother losing all hopes and responsibility. June has to provide for his family, so he hustles and rolls in gangster life. His brother, Sergio (Eric D. Hill Jr) is the school's basketball star and June is determined to live vicariously through him, to make sure that Sergio doesn't end up like he does, that Sergio gets to be what he used to dream of becoming. Their younger sister, Keke Palmer, is an aspiring musician who finds herself distracted by her crush, Chris Collins, who comes from a wealthy family, his dad manages famous artists and musicians. The lower class don't mingle with he upper class, there's suspicion and animosity, but let's face it, who can really get in between blossoming young young romance.
We either have one in our family or extended family or we know of one or two folks in our circle of friends who had to throw in the towel on their dreams and future ambitions because something came up and they're forced to wear a different 'hat' in their family, too early on in the game. BROTHERLY LOVE may be an African American-centered film with African American cast and filmmakers but the story is universal. And what's entertaining about this drama is that there's a bit of "On The Waterfront," there's a bit of "West Side Story" feel to it too. It's clear that this comes from a filmmaker who loves movies, and Jamal also injects a surprise twist ending that you wouldn't see coming a mile away, even M. Night Shyamalan probably couldn't figure it out. BROTHERLY LOVE is about the choices we make, we often argue that there's no choice, we have to do this, we have to do this, it's the only way, but the fact is there is always a choice, and what we ultimately decide would bring consequences that could be either rewarding or deadly.
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