Well Madness fans, the NBA finals are right around the corner, and it seems like the perfect time pay tribute to Dr. Naismith’s great game. This week, the Top Ten list comes from the world of hoops. The list may be a little diverse, though. We have some true stories as well as a loony group of fictional characters. I hope you enjoy the list, and find one for the weekend.
The list will be counting down, from10 to one... and make sure you leave your comments and input!
10) Like Mike . A family film that chronicles the life of a young ball player, portrayed by Bow Wow. It has a great cast, including some faces you’ll know. Jesse Plemons from "Friday Night Lights", and the one and only Eugene Levy of American Pie fame. The story tells of a young boy who finds a pair of MJ's sneakers, and with them, can play basketball with the same unstoppable skills as Jordan himself. A great, fun , family film.Madness rates this film a Pro.
09) Pistol is a movie based on the life of the one ball player I put at the top of the ALL TIME list: “Pistol” Pete Maravich. It follows his life form the time he first picked up a basketball, through his pro career, and to his death at the age of 40. A great cast and a truly wonderful story chronicle the skills he practiced until he could do things with a basketball no one had ever done, or has done since. The full-court, full-speed run with out using his hands for instance... yet he dribbled the entire time.
Madness rates this film a Pro
08) Blue Chips . This one has an all star cast of athletes, Shaq, Penny Hardaway and the great Bob Cousy. Nick Nolte stars as a college coach who is recruiting for his school. The twists and turns abound as he tries to keep the boosters happy and stay within the guidelines of the NCAA.
Madness rates this one with a Pro.
07) White Men Can't Jump . This is a story of the basketball hustle that takes place every day in street games all over the country. It stars Woody Harrelson as the guy who can never get it right, and by the way, can't dunk either. Wesley Snipes is the one who always plays it safe, and takes Woody for a ride only to have to team up with him later to win the big tournament. Enjoy, it is worth the viewing.
Madness gives the film an All-Star rating.
06) Glory Road is the true story of the first college to field an all black team. In 1966, Texas Western and its head coach Don Haskins brought together a team made up of all black players. The movie chronicles the trial and perseverance of the players and coaches as the try and break through the color barrier. Great story and a great cast. Follow the team in all the day-to-day practice on the road to the NCAA National Championship.
Madness gives this a Super Star score.
05) “What’s up Doc?” Who does not love the bunny? Space Jam is the greatest basketball movie ever made... well, that greatest that includes the Looney Tunes. In the movie, Michael Jordan has retired from the NBA, and spends his time playing golf with Charles Barkley and Larry Bird. Meanwhile, the Looney Tunes are being taken over by aliens, (voiced by Danny Devito). Bugs Bunny comes up with the idea of challenging the aliens to a B-ball game for the freedom of all the Tunes. He recruits MJ and the story unfolds. Another outstanding cast, as well as some memorable Looney quotes.
Madness has to give this one a Super Star as well.
04) Hoop Dreams brilliantly follows multiple parallel stories, bringing the viewer in to the lives of two inner-city families. The kids in these families are looking for a chance at the "big time"; their ticket out of the ghetto. Although the main focus is on William Gates and Arthur Agee, their "supporting cast" is equally enthralling. From William's jaded brother Curtis, sublimating his own basketball aspirations to the reality of his blue-collar mailroom job, to Arthur's indomitable mom Sheila, doing the impossible every day as she keeps her troubled family together, there are a thousand reasons to cheer, laugh, cry and rage. The emotions are absolutely packed throughout this amazing, inspirational and cautionary documentary.
Madness gives this one a Superstar rating. It’s a must-see for all basketball fans.
03) Denzel Washington stars in the Spike Lee film, He Got Game . It follows the story of a father who is trying to convince his son (played by Ray Allen of the Boston Celtics) to go to college. It ‘s a drama-packed film that grates on the relationship mentality of father and son. The film comes together perfectly, and Spike Lee proves his brilliance with a phenomenal script.
Madness gives this film a Super Star rating.
02) Coach Carter , a film starring Samuel L. Jackson, is a one of a kind. It is the story of coach, Ken Carter, who is brought in to coach an inner-city team of misfits. He tries to teach the game, as well as some valuable life lessons, to the kids on his team. This is a true "feel good" story. Make sure you don’t miss it.
Madness gives this film a Super Star rating.
01) The number one basketball movie of all time, in the opinion of Madness, is Hoosiers . Gene Hackman is a coach with an unorthodox style and the checkered past. Dennis Hopper plays the town drunk and assistant coach. Together, they lead a small town team to the state championship game. No one thinks they can win, and the town questions the methods of the coach. Great story, great subject and a truly great film. An absolute MUST SEE.
Madness rates this one SuperStar.