A Film Review By Jason L. King
|Starring: Samuel L. Jackson
Directed By: Thomas Carter
Rated: PG13 for Violence and Lanaugage and Other Evil things like that
I never checked this film out in theaters, since I didn’t think it really looked worth my time. Paramount prescreened this film months before it came out, and it didn’t seem to make anyone any more excited about this flick. Add that in with a mediocre trailer and this film seemed doomed from the get go. It was getting great reviews from people at the local Boys and Girls club and from Youth and Shelter Services people while it played at my theater, and seemed to be the troubled teen movie of the week. Still I did not go see it. The other night I picked it up off a rental shelf and figured I’d give it a try. What I got was something far more than I expected. This basketball tale was everything that I thought Director Peter Berg was going for in his football tale, Friday Night Lights. The difference was I found enjoyment in this one, whereas Friday Night Lights I wanted to gouge my eyes out. This is a story of some young athletes who learn that there is more to life than sports, and that winning and losing a simple sports game doesn’t make or break a man for life. Sam Jackson was outstanding in this flick. Playing real life Coach Ken Carter, Jackson is both one of the most caring and most intimidating men on the planet. His role as a coach who sees potential in his team far beyond their performance on the basketball court is very well played. Sam Jackson alone kept me enteratiained for the 2 hours. If I had to say something bad about the film, it is that we’ve seen this story before, a group of losers who find their inner talent both on and off the court and make it to the big game. But then again, people like to see the tales of winners who achieve this through hard work and dedication, and a little coaxing from a great coach. After all who wants to see a team make it to the big game because they won a Coin toss….(oops…Sorry Odessa Texas!) Many of the same elements were in this film that were in Friday Night Lights, it’s just this one played out far better, and better developed characters and showed us all the hard work they put in. This is an Excellent flick and the flick that I wanted Friday Night Lights to Be. If you missed this in the theaters, go pick it up as rental. You won’t be sorry you did.