Today's movie recommendation:
Jake Shuttlesworth is in prison serving time for killing his wife in a violent family feud. He is released on parole, but with one condition - he must persuade his son, genius basketball player Jesus to sign with the governor's alma mater university, Big State. And Jake only has a week to do it.
Interesting movie starring Denzel and (at the time) a real life college basketball player named Ray Allen. Ray had finished his college career and was about to enter the NBA draft when this movie was filmed. He was a very successful college player, and was projected to be a very successful professional as well. When the film was released, it was advertised that Allen was in the movie, just Denzel. I guess the studio thought it wouldn't be taken seriously if they advertised a real life basketball player was the main charachter. It just isn't easy to find a young 20 something year old African-American actor who can pull off that roll (cause the actor would have to be at least 6'6."
The best part of this movie is that Denzel and Ray finally square off in a game of one-on-one at the end of the movie. Denzel (Ray's father) was very hard on him as a young boy. Now Ray is a young man (much bigger than Denzel). The behind the scenes story is that they show up on set to film this scene. Denzel is stretching and stuff, getting warmed up. Ray obviously is a pro, so doesn't need to really do this. Spike Lee calls them over and discusses how they are going to film this. He says "Guys, just go out and play (in character) and we'll go from there." Now, imagine being Denzel and hearing this. This had to be frieghtening. Having to pretend that you are an equal on the basketball court to a guy who is about 20 years younger, 6 inches taller, and is going to be a pro. Not fun. Now the way it works in one-on-one basketball is that if you make your shot, you get the ball back. Well, Denzel makes his first four shots in a row. Of course, being in character, he was talking trash to Ray Allen. On the inside, he must've been scared out of his mind. Terrified. He is showing up a kid who is a pro. It was only a matter of time before Ray was going to get pissed off. Sure enough, Ray picks it up, but it must've been a riot to sit there and watch this scene be filmed.
Walter Ray Allen (born July 20, 1975) is an American professional basketball player who is currently playing for the Boston Celtics in the National Basketball Association. He has played professionally for the Milwaukee Bucks, Seattle SuperSonics, and the Boston Celtics; and collegiately for the University of Connecticut Huskies. One of the most accurate 3-point and free throw shooters in NBA history, he is a ten-time NBA All-Star and won an Olympic gold medal as a member of the 2000 United States Men's Basketball Team. Allen has acted in two films, including a co-starring role in the 1998 Spike Lee film He Got Game. On 02011-02-10 February 10, 2011, Allen became the NBA's all-time leader in regular season three-point field goals made, surpassing Reggie Miller's mark of 2,560. On 02011-03-11 March 11, 2011, Allen surpassed Miller's career total of 6,486 three-point field goal attempts.