6.3/10
3,147
32 user 56 critic

High Flying Bird (2019)

TV-MA | | Drama, Sport | 8 February 2019 (USA)
Trailer
2:04 | Trailer
A sports agent pitches a rookie basketball client on an intriguing and controversial business opportunity during a lockout.

Director:

Steven Soderbergh
Reviews
Popularity
49 ( 81)

Steven Soderbergh Scores With 'High Flying Bird'

Find out why people are talking about High Flying Bird, the Oscar-winning director's new Netflix film about race and power in the NBA, shot entirely on an iPhone.

Watch our video

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A woman in Harlem embraces her pregnancy while she and her family struggle to prove her fiancé innocent of a crime.

Director: Barry Jenkins
Stars: KiKi Layne, Stephan James, Regina King
Shoplifters (2018)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A family of small-time crooks take in a child they find outside in the cold.

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda
Stars: Lily Franky, Sakura Andô, Kirin Kiki
Biography | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

When Lee Israel falls out of step with current tastes, she turns her art form to deception.

Director: Marielle Heller
Stars: Melissa McCarthy, Richard E. Grant, Dolly Wells
Free Solo (2018)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Follow Alex Honnold as he becomes the first person to ever free solo climb Yosemite's 3,000ft high El Capitan Wall. With no ropes or safety gear, he completed arguably the greatest feat in rock climbing history.

Directors: Jimmy Chin, Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi
Stars: Dierdre Wolownick, Tommy Caldwell, Jimmy Chin
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

After a series of paintings by an unknown artist are discovered, a supernatural force enacts revenge on those who have allowed their greed to get in the way of art.

Director: Dan Gilroy
Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, Zawe Ashton
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

American Senator Gary Hart's presidential campaign in 1988 is derailed when he's caught in a scandalous love affair.

Director: Jason Reitman
Stars: Hugh Jackman, Vera Farmiga, J.K. Simmons
Burning (2018)
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Jong-su bumps into a girl who used to live in the same neighborhood as him, who asks him to look after her cat while on a trip to Africa. When back, she introduces Ben, a mysterious guy she met there, who confesses his secret hobby.

Director: Chang-dong Lee
Stars: Ah-in Yoo, Steven Yeun, Jong-seo Jun
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A look at the life of painter Vincent van Gogh during the time he lived in Arles and Auvers-sur-Oise, France.

Director: Julian Schnabel
Stars: Willem Dafoe, Rupert Friend, Oscar Isaac
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A kaleidoscopic and humanistic view of the Black community in Hale County, Alabama.

Director: RaMell Ross
Stars: Latrenda 'Boosie' Ash, Quincy Bryant, Daniel Collins
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A rebellious, hard-living factory worker juggles relationships with two women, one of whom is married to another man but pregnant with his child.

Director: Karel Reisz
Stars: Albert Finney, Shirley Anne Field, Rachel Roberts
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Three young men bond together to escape volatile families in their Rust-Belt hometown. As they face adult responsibilities, unexpected revelations threaten their decade-long friendship.

Director: Bing Liu
Stars: Keire Johnson, Bing Liu, Zack Mulligan
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Two melancholy Hong Kong policemen fall in love: one with a mysterious female underworld figure, the other with a beautiful and ethereal server at a late-night restaurant he frequents.

Director: Kar-Wai Wong
Stars: Brigitte Lin, Takeshi Kaneshiro, Tony Chiu-Wai Leung
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
André Holland ... Ray Burke
Melvin Gregg ... Erick Scott
Eddie Tavares ... Waiter
Farah Bala ... Manager Sal
Skip Bayless ... Himself
Shannon Sharpe Shannon Sharpe ... Himself
Joy Taylor Joy Taylor ... Herself
Zazie Beetz ... Sam
Bill Duke ... Spence
Zachary Quinto ... David Starr
Caleb McLaughlin ... Darius
Bobbi A Bordley ... Freddy (as Bobbi Bordley)
Sonja Sohn ... Myra
Kyle MacLachlan ... David Seton
Jeryl Prescott ... Emera Umber
Edit

Storyline

A sports agent pitches a rookie basketball client on an intriguing and controversial business opportunity during a lockout.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Play the Game on top of the Game

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 February 2019 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

High Flying Bird See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

When Spence is talking with Ray Burke, he chides him about his Ivy League education. Ray says he didn't go Ivy, and Spence says, "Rutgers, Black Ivy." Rutgers is not a member of the Ivy League but rather the State University of New Jersey. See more »

Quotes

Sam: I know you're old school. I sent you a fax.
See more »

Soundtracks

I Wish
Written by Anne Dudley (as Anne Jennifer Dudley), Malcolm McLaren (as Malcolm Robert Andrew McLaren), Alvin Wink Flythe, Jr., Trevor Horn (as Trevor Charles Horn) and Skee-Lo (as Antoine Roundtree)
Performed by Skee-Lo
Courtesy of RCA Records
By arrangement with Sony Music Entertainment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
sports agent with a twist
6 February 2019 | by ferguson-6See all my reviews

Greetings again from the darkness. Steven Soderbergh has won an Oscar for Best Director (TRAFFIC, 2002) and is one of the filmmakers who has enjoyed both Box Office success (the "Oceans" franchise) and critical acclaim (SEX, LIES, AND VIDEOTAPE, 1989). He has also been behind some quite creative TV projects ("The Knick", "Godless"), as well as many technical advancements in the industry. This latest is his second consecutive film to be shot entirely with an iPhone (UNSANE, 2018). Bluntly stated, Mr. Soderbergh beats his own drum.

Oscar winner Tarell Alvin McRaney (MOONLIGHT) wrote the script and a talented cast allowed filming to be completed in only 3 weeks ... a remarkably short production time for a feature film that is quite watchable and polished. Andre Holland (also one of the film's producers) plays Ray, a sports agent with a soul. Rarely do films portray sports agents as the smartest guy in the room, much less as one with altruistic motives. But that describes Ray - although we have our doubts at times. The film opens with Ray having a heated discussion over lunch with his newest client - hot shot rookie Erick (played by Melvyn Gregg). The NBA is in the midst of a lockout and young Erick's top pick contract has not yet been executed ... so he's in need of funds, as is Ray and the agency he works for.

Sprinkled throughout, and serving as a framing device, are talking head shots of actual NBA players Reggie Jackson, Karl Anthony Towns and Donovan Mitchell discussing the challenges of being a rookie. Their insight and perspective adds an element of reality to the tone of the film. Zazie Beetz (DEADPOOL 2) co-stars as Sam, Ray's assistant who constantly reminds him, "I don't work for you anymore", despite her exceptionally strategic maneuvering of others. Also appearing are the always interesting Bill Duke as Spencer, who runs a camp for up and coming youth players; Kyle MacLachlan as the owners' lead negotiator; Sonja Sohn as the Players Union Rep; and Zachary Quinto as Ray's boss.

Ray's work behind the scenes is misinterpreted by many, but his focus is on getting the two sides to negotiate so the strike can end. During this process, the film makes an interesting statement about who owns the players' image. Is it the league, the players' association, or the player himself? It's a legal and philosophical question that again crosses the line into real life. There is also a comical bit that takes aim at the business side of the league regarding selling sneakers and inspiring rap lyrics.

Reminiscent of other Soderbergh films, there is an emphasis on heavy dialogue and creative camera work, as well as some life lessons offered up along the way. "You care all the way or you don't care at all" is a philosophy preached by Spence, and clearly leading by example is an important element to the key characters. Toss in the music of Richie Havens, and it's quite obvious this isn't the typical inspirational, feel-good sports movie.


12 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 32 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed