Review: The Longshots
Plot: Ice Cube plays Curtis Plummer, a washed up ex- football quarterback who takes his eleven year old niece, Jasmine (Keke Palmer), under his wing when he discovers she possesses a natural talent for the game. She eventually ends up becoming the first female quarterback in the Pop Warner junior football league- and soon leads her struggling small town team to the championships. Inspired by a true story.
Review: Ill be honest here- the only reason I was interested in seeing THE LONGSHOTS is due to the fact that its directed by none other than former Limp Bizkit front man Fred Durst. While I was never a fan of his band, I was curious to see if he could direct a decent film, and sure enough, THE LONGSHOT is just that- decent.
Lets face it- a family comedy starring Ice Cube is not going to win any Oscars. I like Cube as much as the next guy, but Im a little disappointed by his new family friendly image. I mean- cmon, this is the same guy who was a founding member of N.W.A and co-wrote a song called F*** tha Police! Whod a thought that twenty years later hed be the new Bill Cosby!
For that matter- what the heck is with Fred Durst directing a family comedy? I remember back in the Limp Bizkit days- he was always trying to come off as street with his trademark red baseball cap worn backwards (doesnt get more street than that folks!). Its no secret that hes been itching to get behind the camera for ages (and at one point was supposed to direct LORDS OF DOGTOWN), but I really would have thought his first big studio film might have been a little edgier.
Career criticism aside- THE LONGSHOT actually isnt a bad film. While I was more or less indifferent to it I can respect the fact that it was obviously a film made for kids, and in that regards its not bad at all. It has a nice message, and despite the fact that I feel hes been totally emasculated over the years, Cube remains a solid actor. As his football playing niece Keke Palmer does a great job. Shes one of the better young actresses out there- and is never anything less than 100% likeable. I also got a kick out of seeing SNL vet Garrett Morris turn up as the town preacher. For his part, Durst does a competent job directing, but its going to take something a little more ambitious if Durst wants to make a real name for himself behind the camera.
While Im not going to suggest readers run out and see THE LONGSHOTS when it opens this weekend- it is passable family entertainment. Considering there are not a lot of good family films out there at the moment- Im sure it would be agreeable time filler for families on a Saturday afternoon.
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