WHITE MEN CAN'T JUMP (2023)
Release Date: 05/19/23 [Hulu]
Genre: Comedy. Drama. Sport.
Studio: 20th Century Studios
"A remake of the 1992 film about a pair of basketball hustlers who team up to earn extra cash."
OUR MOVIE REVIEW:
Let us start off with the complete and honest truth… I have never seen the 1992 original so I went into this Hulu remake with an open mind, taking it in as a standalone sports film for folks that may be in the same situation as myself.
Attempting to lightly dissect issues about race, sexuality and mortality, White Men Can’t Jump attempts to take on too much and ultimately lacks a sound reason for existing - apart from a few “bet-based” basketball matches. Overly long for what it needed to be, yet too short to capture the purpose for all the issues it was attempting to tackle, White Men Can’t Jump works purely on the semi-charm of its leads – Jack Harlow’s Jeremy and Sinqua Walls’ Kamal Allen. Making his acting debut, Harlow is a surprising shining component of the feature, one that I would’ve never seen coming. The same can be simultaneously said for Walls’ performance, although his character could’ve been better built upon throughout the ground-level script.
The late Lance Reddick has a minor role in the film, contributing to a small piece of the heart poking through, but his time on screen, similar to everything else, was incorrectly proportioned. Similar statements can be said for Jeremy and Kamal’s life partners as they appear to only be around so that in one instance they can be incredibly supportive and in another be the predictable disappointed partner due to the actions taking place.
Ultimately more about the art of fixing a bet than the sport it’s based around, the final tournament results in minuscule stakes as the end is laid out from the start. White Men Can’t Jump is far from a swish, it’s a film that can be completely “fine” for a mindless one-time watch. While delivering a little bit of heart and some decent performances along the way, I found this 2023 rendition of the original to be a light-hearted basketball film about comradery and a misunderstanding of one’s own existence. Even so, I don’t find myself ever returning, even going as far as to say it’s one I’ll be forgetting rather quickly after this review and one to note as the definition of a film created to then be lost among the endlessly forgotten content of a streamer.