Monday, February 14, 2011

Love And Basketball

On this day dedicated to love and lovers all over the world I feel it only appropriate to mention one of the greatest love stories of our time, Spike Lee's joint Love and Basketball. The movie chronicles two up and coming basketball players played by Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan. The two are cast as high school sweethearts that fall in and out of love while trying to fulfill their dreams of playing pro basketball.

As the movie unfolds the two characters come to a crossroads in their relationship when Omar Epps reaches out to Sanaa about his parents impending divorce. Rather than break a team mandated curfew to console her boyfriend Sanaa's character instead hopes the subject can be addressed at a later time. When Omar takes offense the two separate and their love is lost. Years later realizing that Omar is the only person she's ever loved Sanaa's character challenges Omar to a game of one on one for his love. The game is gut wrenching to watch as Sanaa pours out her heart and soul to win him back. Ultimately she is defeated, but Omar is receptive to her efforts and takes her back. The movie has a fairy tale ending with the two of them getting married and having kids while Sanaa stars in the WNBA.

I typically don't like a bunch of sap in my sports movies, but Spike Lee blends the concepts of loving a sport and romantic love perfectly. It is compelling to watch how dreams and ambition sometimes comes with a heavy price and that cost is more than a person in love is willing to sacrifice at times. As the story unfolds you realize that sacrifice can be forgoing your own agenda and initiative for the sake of others. Not to get all mushy on you, but I hope everyone has a great Valentines Day.

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