The Stream: Doesn’t capture the feel of the original fully
The Big Screen: Some good comedic lines throughout
The Final Bill: Funny flick but not touching the original– S2S: Movie Review
Writers: Kenya Barris, Doug Hall, Ron Shelton
Stars: Sinqua Walls, Jack Harlow, Lance Reddick
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Sport
Rating: R (Strong language
Runtime: 1 hour 41 minutes
Production Companies: 20th Century Studios, Khalabo Ink Society, Mortal Media
Platform: Hulu released May 19,2023
Welcome back, Streamers. A remake of the 1992 film, White Men Can’t Jump, which is about a pair of basketball hustlers who team up to earn extra cash, was released on Hulu over the weekend. Here, in 2023, we have the same movie with a fresh feel. Let’s see how it plays out.
Let’s talk about the elephant in the room. The movie looks pretty crisp, clean, colorful, but it felt like someone’s first movie. Calmatic, who I believe did rap videos prior to his feature films, definitely has skills; but, some of the basketball scenes felt repetitive and some of the takes selected just fell flat. While some of his perspective made the movie feel fresh, as it went along it did tend to get stale. Hopefully, we’ll see more from him as he progresses.
As for our main ballers, Jack Harlow is no Woody Harrelson, which I think we all know, but Harlow and the writers made this character his own. Harlow’s earthy, trendy, babbling, character was interesting enough. Strangely enough, they didn’t have Harlow use any of his rapping acumen to their benefit. This movie definitely could’ve benefited from a “Dave” type of moment, even though they are enemies. That brings us to that D-Wade guy. Excuse me, I mean Sinqua Walls. I mean is it hard to play an angry black man trying to not explode in society? It’s not, but he played the typical role pretty well. BUT WAS HE REALLY DUNKING THOUGH?! I’ll leave you with that mystery. The only other notable cast member was Teyana Taylor, and this was no A Thousand and One Oscar performance. Sorry, girl! Also, Rest in Power, Lance Reddick. Otherwise, we have a couple cameos and funny one offs.
Notably, this movie isn’t the original. It’s hard to capture the racial tension of the time like back then. Moreover, this movie was much less about the racial divide as it was about introspection and self-awareness. There are racial jokes throughout, but they aren’t central to the conflict of the story as in the original and so they kind of fell flat.
When it comes down to the final play, White Men Can’t Jump isn’t a great movie but you’ll giggle your way through it. Harlow tries his hardest to act and Walls plays an angry black man as we all would. The movie is similar to the original but the tension and cast chemistry can’t be matched. The writers were able to make this funny enough to watch but not a must-see stream flick. Grab a bowl of popcorn and check out White Men Can’t Jump when you get a chance on Hulu. *swish* Nailed it.