Number of Times Seen – 1 (28 Jul 2014)
Brief Synopsis – Documentary movie that follows the high school basketball careers of two Chicago inner city teenagers in the late 80’s.
My Take on it – Few can argue against the fact that Steve James is an exceptional film maker.
He knows how to choose interesting topics to film and gives the viewer compelling characters.
When this movie came out in 1994, film critic Roger Ebert hailed this 3 hour documentary epic as a true masterpiece.
When it failed to even receive an oscar nomination for best documentary, Ebert went on a crusade to change the skewed nomination process for documentaries. His endeavors led to the Academy reforming the process to what most believe is fairer than the previous way.
I think that this is a case where Ebert was slightly off the mark. This isnt a true masterpiece but rather a good documentary that is overlong which leads to numerous boring and bland scenes that could have been cut.
I commend James on his innovative idea to follow these two young potential future basketball superstars for years in order to make this film.
The task of cutting 250 hours of film down to 3 is not an easy task and he should also be commended for those efforts too.
This is far from being perfect but most of it is quite enjoyable.
Bottom Line – Good movie that tells a somewhat interesting story, but the story is too long and bland in certain areas. Not the masterpiece that Ebert claimed it was, but still rightfully changed the way documentaries are seen by the Academy. Recommended!
Rating – Globe Worthy
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