LIFE PLAN. One of the best movies of the year

Jeremiah Zagar has made one of the best films of 2022 so far, in which all the elements fit together perfectly.

When Adam Sandler appears in a movie that isn’t silly comedy, promotional material often screams about his “role in life” and an award-winning performance. As a rule, these are empty boasts, but what if the announcements once in a while find their coverage in reality? Oh, let’s take one Life throwin which Adam Sandler literally shines. Is this his role, nomen omen, life? Hard to say. Is one of the best? I can write with full conviction: YES.

In fact, Adam Sandler has repeatedly confirmed that he is a talented actor – it is enough to recall the roles in Left heart, Kill the memories or recent Rough diamonds. The problem is that Sandler produces and stars in so many dubious quality titles that he is still considered a lousy actor despite the occasional hard shots. This time, Jeremiah Zagar and him come to his rescue Life throw, one of the best original Netflix movies to come out in the last few years – or perhaps the best in its entire history? A filmmaker who has so far worked mainly with short films and documentaries (he has only one full-length fiction, We animals from 2018) made a work that in an amazing way reflects the energy and dynamics hidden in the beautiful sport, which is basketball.

Life throw tells the story of Stanley Sugerman (Adam Sandler), the scout of the legendary NBA basketball team, the Philadelphia 76ers. A man spends weeks traveling, seeing talents in various corners of the world. All this to find talents who could become NBA stars in a moment and reach the basketball top. Due to the nature of his work, Stanley spends very little time with his wife (Queen Latifah) and teenage daughter (Jordan Hull), but when his job duties once cast him to Spain, Sugerman finds a diamond that can compensate him for many years of sacrifice. When he fails to see another player in action, Stan goes to a streetball match where Bo Cruz (Juancho Hernangómez, actually an NBA basketball player) shines, an extremely effective player who plays… in work boots! Charmed by Cruz’s brilliant game, Stanley quickly establishes a relationship with his boyfriend and his family, and then takes him to Philadelphia to open the way to the NBA for the brilliant player.

A star is born

Scenario Life throw is – to put it simply – A star is born on the basketball court. There are no fictional innovations in Zagar’s film, because it is a simple story about a boy who found a mentor and was given a chance by fate, but the trick is to tell a non-original story so that it reaches the viewer – and here it was possible! This is largely due to the perfect chemistry between the actors – Sandler and Hernangómez create a very credible, quasi-paternal-filial relationship, thanks to which the viewer does not mind the fact that “he has already seen it somewhere”. The writers Will Fetters and Taylor Materne did a great job with the dialogues, so the whole thing sounds natural, fun and fresh, and the good energy and fun that the players, led by Bo Cruz, derive from the game of basketball, are immediately communicated to the audience. Certainly, this is not hampered by production tricks, such as shots from a drone or dozens of training sequences, during which the camera seems to keep an eye on the ball – these scenes really make the viewer tired, as if he himself participated in the murderous preparations for the match. More than one boxing film, in which training sequences are an indispensable element, cannot boast such masterly shots.

I had high hopes for Life throw and I was absolutely not disappointed – Jeremiah Zagar made one of the best films of 2022 so far, in which all the elements fit together perfectly. While on Life throw Basketball fans will have the most delicious fun, catching the faces of former and current NBA stars from the next scenes, this is far from Zagar’s film to a hermetic work. On the contrary – Life throw is an exciting proposition for every viewer who is hungry for good, non-stupid film entertainment with heroes who can be truly liked.

Dawid Myśliwiec

Dawid Myśliwiec

Always in “watching”, “I’ll be watching” or “just watched” mode. After I put my daughter to bed, I sit in front of the screen and disappear – sometimes I lose myself in some American black crime novel, and sometimes I just devour the latest Netflix film. For 12 years I have been running the blog Myś with varying intensity.

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