There have been many films about young basketball players over the years, with main characters wondering if they can ever make it to the NBA, or even a college team. Nothing is easy for athletes in high school, there is only so much time in a day, to do homework, and attend class all day and then after school practice with the team. For the few who are very good, the pressure can be overwhelming. One bad game, one missed shot or one career ending injury. The odds are very long for Football and Basketball, maybe 1 in 10,000 great high school players will ever make it to the NBA or NFL.
The new movie “Boogie” is highly unusual because its about a very good Chinese Basketball player who has to overcome the rarity of any Asian making it to the NBA, or any major organized sport. During this film I was thinking about Jeremy Lin who had a miracle season with the New York Knicks some 10 years ago and even attended Harvard, creating an extremely rare sports sensation that may never be seen again. Lin lasted a few more years in the NBA, then went to the China and now is back in the G league trying to make it back to the NBA again. Everyone has to admire an athlete like Jeremy Lin who is doing his best with the highs and lows of being a professional athlete.
The problem with Boogie is that the story is not strong enough and there are not nearly enough impressive basketball scenes, making the movie mostly boring. There is some controversy over Alfred ‘Boogie’ Chin, played by Taylor Takahashi – possibly going to China for a $750,000 contract rather than taking a college scholarship that is somewhat interesting, as is his relationship with his girlfriend Eleanor played by Taylour Paige – but not nearly enough to save this film.
I agree with the low 47% ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and do not recommend this movie.