Shoot Your Shot

White Men Can’t Jump is a slam dunk. Despite the title, White Men Can’t Jump is a more iconic part of black cinema. Complete with playful trash talk and emphasis on streetball. White Men Can’t Jump is steeped in the 90’s with colorful outfits, a hip-hop score, an Atari video game, and a cast that got big around the time. The titular white man who can’t jump is Woody Harrelson as college basketball player Billy. Since he’s white and geeky looking, Billy manages to hustle streetballer Sydney and his crew.

Wesley Snipes is hilarious, but Syd is no chump. So he decides to join Billy and his fiery Puerto Rican girlfriend Gloria played by a scene stealing Rosie Perez. Basically Blade, Carnage, and Renee Montoya hustle streetballers to pay off gangsters. At least gangsters are Billy’s problem, Syd is more concerned with buying a house for his family. Harrelson and Snipes play off each other well whether on the court or bonding. I even believe Harrelson and Perez as a couple, but Billy does make a lot of stupid bets.

It feels like the movie will end several times, but there are countless hustles going on that bring the characters back to square one. When a basketball competition doesn’t work, Gloria gets her wish to be on Jeopardy. I expected appearances from real life basketball players, but I wasn’t expecting Alex Trebek. It feels like the end once again, but Billy still needs to prove to Syd and himself that he can jump. White Men Can’t Jump is a basketball film that any race can enjoy.

White Men Can't Jump

Billy plays ball against Syd

2 thoughts on “Shoot Your Shot

  1. When I was growing up they showed this all the time on HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime. Never saw this film actually, heard it’s pretty funny and entertaining, I was a little more familiar with Harrelson and Snipes’ other film Money Train where they play adopted brothers.

    Liked by 1 person

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