Written by Eric Trillman
This edition of YFFIT is a personal one. Like Mike is a film near and dear to my heart, as a 6 year old fan of the NBA and the musical stylings of Lil Bow Wow I couldn’t have asked for a better movie. I’ve seen this movie no less than 587 times and at least 10 of those were in a movie theater. However, children are dumb and easy to please, or at least I was. Not unlike McDonald’s this movie was a lot better when I was kid. Now? It’s trash. How Trash? Let me show you.
1. Calvin Cambridge should be dead.
Let’s get this out of the way right now, Calvin Cambridge should be DEAD. Our hero ventures out into a storm, scales an extremely large tree, grabs the sneakers hanging from the telephone pole, the telephone pole is then electrocuted, and then he falls to the ground without so much as a scratch on him!
In the real version of this movie Calvin dies after breaking his neck from the fall if getting struck by lightning doesn’t kill him first, Bittleman is arrested for child neglect, the group home is shut down, the other children are scattered about the system, Tracy never makes up with his father, and the Knights definitely don’t make the playoffs. But alas, that’s not how things shake out.
2. How did Michael Jordan’s sneakers end up at that orphanage?
According to the first five minutes of Space Jam, Michael Jordan is from North Carolina. Like Mike takes place in Los Angeles, how do these tattered sneakers cover that kind of ground? Also, the nun that hands them to Calvin says the sneakers once belonged to a famous basketball player with the initials “MJ” if it’s really him what are they doing in some donation box?
These are sneakers worn by the possibly the greatest basketball player of all time, and instead of auctioning them off to raise funds for the group home you’re letting Shad Moss run these rare collectors items into the ground.
3. How did Calvin Cambridge play in the NBA?
While in 2002 the draft eligibility rules were more lax than they are now, I’m more than sure you had to be at least finished with high school to sign with an NBA team. Calvin Cambridge who is in the 8th grade does it in a matter of days with ease.
There’s no resistance from the media, the league office, the other 29 owners. “Those wacky LA Knights” everyone says while ignoring the fact that league rules and child labor laws are being broken. At the very least Mark Cuban’s loud mouth square head ass would
have had something to say. David Stern outlawed du-rags but let child endangerment cook? I refuse to believe it.
4. HOW DID CALVIN CAMBRIDGE PLAY IN THE NBA?!?!?!?!?
I’ll humor the movie and say that the shoes gave Calvin the talent to play in the NBA but
it didn’t say anything about the strength. Calvin is barely 5 feet tall and can’t weigh more than whatever the healthy weight is for a 5 foot tall child.
At one point, Calvin finishes strong over the Admiral for the and one. If David Robinson was to actually foul him even a little bit the movie ends at Calvin’s funeral and with the closure of the NBA. Instead Calvin weaves in and out of defenses getting wherever he wants to on the floor. If Charles Barkley thinks Steph is allowed to score and showboat with impunity he’d have a heart attack watching this.
5. Calvin just gets to go home?
In the dramatic final game of the year, Calvin’s sneakers are ripped just as the Knights
regain possession for a chance to win the game and the 8th and final playoff spot in the West. Without the source of his power he announces his retirement from the NBA just as the coach is drawing up the biggest play of the season and everyone just accepts it.
The Knights go on to win the game sure, but what about the upcoming series against what I assume were the dominant Lakers of the early 2000s? Their best player has just retired and they’ve got Shaq and Kobe coming up. The Knights were the fictional stand in
for the LA Clippers who were at the time at the time, owned by Donald Sterling, and if the owner of the Knights is anything like him Calvin walking out on his contract would’ve garnered a response that put Dan Gilbert’s comic sans letter to shame.
I still enjoy watching this movie. Few things make me happier than watching Bow Wow and Morris Chestnut bond to the tune of Party Up, or Dirk Nowitzki asking Calvin for his autograph, but it is still ungood and I’m man enough to admit that. The things we like aren’t always good and that’s just fine.