The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Coach Carter (2005)

This inspirational basketball film starring Samuel L. Jackson is somewhat by-the-numbers, but rousing nonetheless.  The tale of a basketball coach who instills academic values into a team where the term "student athlete" is only half true is filled with platitudes, but I'm tellin' ya, I loved every minute of it.  Bless MTV for trying.  Sam Jackson gives another intense performance, even if it covers no new emotional ground for him.  The performances in general are decent, the values top-notch (if a bit cavalier on the issue of abortion) and the basketball sequences great.  Almost a precise mirror-image of "Friday Night Lights", that darling of the media, in which none of the black characters had any inner life, and the single family conversation between non-whites was viewed through a pane of glass.  "Coach Carter" is a fine, solid piece of work, and deserves an appreciative "B".

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