1097 Love & Basketball

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Criterion and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here. Threads may contain spoilers.
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swo17
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1097 Love & Basketball

#1 Post by swo17 » Tue Jun 15, 2021 5:17 pm

Love & Basketball

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Sparks fly both on and off the court in this groundbreaking feature debut by writer-director Gina Prince-Bythewood (The Old Guard), which elevated the coming-of-age romance by giving honest expression to the challenges female athletes face in a world that doesn’t see them as equal. Sanaa Lathan (Alien vs. Predator) and Omar Epps (Higher Learning) make for one of the most iconic screen couples of the 2000s as the basketball-obsessed next-door neighbors who find love over flirtatious pickup games, fall apart under the strain of high-pressure college hoops and families, and drift in and out of each other's lives as they pursue their twin aspirations of playing professionally. Aided by stellar supporting performances and an eclectic R&B soundtrack, Love & Basketball captures the intoxicating passions, heartbreaking setbacks, and sky-high ambitions that mark a young woman's journey to the top of her game and to lasting love.

SPECIAL FEATURES

• New 4K digital restoration, supervised by director Gina Prince-Bythewood, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
• Audio commentary from 2000 featuring Prince-Bythewood and actor Sanaa Lathan
Playing for Your Heart, a new making-of documentary featuring Prince-Bythewood, Lathan, actors Omar Epps and Alfre Woodard, Reggie Rock Bythewood, and basketball adviser Colleen Matsuhara
Editing "Love & Basketball," a new program featuring Prince-Bythewood and editor Terilyn A. Shropshire
• New conversation on the film's impact among Prince-Bythewood, WNBA legend and Hall of Famer Sheryl Swoopes, and writer-producer-actor Lena Waithe
• Audition tape excerpts and six deleted scenes
• Three short films by Prince-Bythewood: Stitches (1991), Progress (1997), and Bowl of Pork (1997), with a new introduction by Prince-Bythewood
• Trailer
• English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
• PLUS: An essay by author Roxane Gay

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Boosmahn
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#2 Post by Boosmahn » Tue Jun 15, 2021 5:29 pm

I could've sworn this was speculated a while back, but I can't find any mention of it on this forum. Am I misremembering?

Also, what's the deal with the name-drop of Alien vs. Predator?

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#3 Post by therewillbeblus » Tue Jun 15, 2021 5:44 pm

Boosmahn wrote:
Tue Jun 15, 2021 5:29 pm
Also, what's the deal with the name-drop of Alien vs. Predator?
Probably better than name-dropping Nappily Ever After or Tyler Perry's The Family That Preys linked to Sanaa Lathan, though the Denzel Washington vehicle Out of Time is criminally underrated and should be a proud reference point

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knives
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#4 Post by knives » Tue Jun 15, 2021 6:15 pm

Cleveland Show might have worked as well. Either way I’m super excited. This perhaps better even than her amazing follow up, Beyond the Lights, which I know is a board favorite. I’m surprised that they didn’t interview Spike Lee who was a producer in this.

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TheKieslowskiHaze
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#5 Post by TheKieslowskiHaze » Tue Jun 15, 2021 6:44 pm

Boosmahn wrote:
Tue Jun 15, 2021 5:29 pm
Also, what's the deal with the name-drop of Alien vs. Predator?
One can only hope it's a hint about a future release...

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The Narrator Returns
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#6 Post by The Narrator Returns » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:00 pm

knives wrote:
Tue Jun 15, 2021 6:15 pm
Cleveland Show might have worked as well. Either way I’m super excited. This perhaps better even than her amazing follow up, Beyond the Lights, which I know is a board favorite. I’m surprised that they didn’t interview Spike Lee who was a producer in this.
They could've also licensed the other Prince-Bythewood-Lathan collaboration (made the same year as this), Disappearing Acts, which is also Warner Bros. (via HBO) and is unfortunately not good enough to stand on its own. But beyond that I'm just ecstatic about this release. I watched L&B for the first time last year when Blank Check was covering Gina Prince-Bythewood and it's terrific, in addition to everything else it's such a visually confident work for a debut.

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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#7 Post by pistolwink » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:11 pm

Boosmahn wrote:
Tue Jun 15, 2021 5:29 pm
Also, what's the deal with the name-drop of Alien vs. Predator?
A quiet nod to the Paul W.S. Anderson auteurists in Criterion's fanbase?

Kino Lorber has a habit, in their back-cover/promotional copy, of mentioning some of the more unlikely other films associated with the actors/composers/writers/etc. who made the movie you're holding in your hand. I'll be looking at Max and the Junkmen and it'll mention, out of all the famous films Michel Piccoli has made, like, Le Trio infernal or something. (This is not an actual example, I'm not near my video collection to find one.)

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domino harvey
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#8 Post by domino harvey » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:14 pm

Usually labels pick other movies they’ve released or in their licenses (when available). Somehow thinking this is not the case here

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swo17
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#9 Post by swo17 » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:34 pm

I feel like Criterion releases don't usually refer to other movies actors have been in like this in their copy

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CSM126
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#10 Post by CSM126 » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:39 pm

Surprise: Ashley Clark is a huge AvP fan and flexed his curatorial muscle just in time for next month’s Halloween announcements

Bressonaire
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#11 Post by Bressonaire » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:44 pm

I think Domino is right. To me it has the feel of something that was being tested and wasn't ready for prime time, but it slipped through accidentally. The other releases haven't got mentions like this. Probably just human error that has no serious significance.

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#12 Post by therewillbeblus » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:53 pm

I dunno, love and basketball go together like Alien and Predator. Thematic relevance?

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CSM126
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#13 Post by CSM126 » Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:56 pm

Probably just something the licensor wanted done for whatever reason.


(Because AvP was included as a package deal)

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domino harvey
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#14 Post by domino harvey » Tue Jun 15, 2021 8:19 pm

It’s also possible the audience they’d like to draw in for this is more familiar with AvP too

Gerald Christie
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#15 Post by Gerald Christie » Tue Jun 15, 2021 11:14 pm

Solid film, hopefully now that Criterion is releasing it more people will get to know it. Reading the comments related to this film, it's a shame that people continue to argue that Criterion is being too woke or caving into some kind of pressure just because they are releasing a film that is directed by and starring black people. The movie is legitimately good and people should give it a chance instead of being an ignorant and racist troll. This was one of the very first films to portray a positive representation of a young black couple. The film isn't perfect by any means but what it lacks in certain areas it more than makes up for in its focus on female perspective, multidimensional black characters (something that unfortunately to this day not present enough) and chemistry between the two protagonists.

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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#16 Post by colinr0380 » Wed Jun 16, 2021 1:30 am

To be fair Sanaa Lathan was the main lead of Alien vs Predator and it was a big role in a major franchise film at the time. It was a much smaller role but I still remember her role as Wesley Snipes' now rather uncomfortably younger than him vampire mother in Blade, which was the first film I saw her in and her scenes (along with Kris Kristofferson's) are probably the best scenes of the film! Though of course it may have been better to have mentioned that she was also in Soderbergh's Contagion briefly as well, as Laurence Fishburne's wife he breaks his confidentiality clause to warn about the upcoming lockdowns!

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TheKieslowskiHaze
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#17 Post by TheKieslowskiHaze » Wed Jun 16, 2021 10:24 am

Gerald Christie wrote:
Tue Jun 15, 2021 11:14 pm
Reading the comments related to this film, it's a shame that people continue to argue that Criterion is being too woke or caving into some kind of pressure just because they are releasing a film that is directed by and starring black people.
Honest Question: Where are you seeing these kinds of comments?

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yoloswegmaster
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#18 Post by yoloswegmaster » Wed Jun 16, 2021 10:30 am

TheKieslowskiHaze wrote:
Wed Jun 16, 2021 10:24 am
Gerald Christie wrote:
Tue Jun 15, 2021 11:14 pm
Reading the comments related to this film, it's a shame that people continue to argue that Criterion is being too woke or caving into some kind of pressure just because they are releasing a film that is directed by and starring black people.
Honest Question: Where are you seeing these kinds of comments?
Just go to reddit or to the bluray.com forums, plenty of comments saying that there saying that they are "too woke" for releasing a film directed by a Black person. Thankfully, a lot of people seem to be counteracting against this by making fun of said comments.

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#19 Post by therewillbeblus » Wed Jun 16, 2021 10:42 am

I guess I don't see why multiple motives can't coexist. Even before this interview that launched mass concern about Criterion's POC-film prioritization, they had been releasing more women-directed films that were well-regarded yet given little exposure, and this seems to fit right within that already established wheelhouse. Criterion wouldn't release any of these films if they didn't think they were worthwhile, and also if strapped to a lie detector might be making a concerted effort to release more black and women-directed movies. The question back to those objectors is: If Criterion was not paying attention to these demographics and just aimlessly releasing whatever, would these films enter their orbit and thus remain stuck in obscurity? I don't know the answer, but I suspect that since systemically these populations are neglected, including in cinema, we would be getting less of them. That doesn't mean the films were forced into the catalog, or even demanded on a conscious level, but rather that by being more mindful and expanding peripheries of focus, Criterion is reaching out to include more diverse worthy films.

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dwk
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#20 Post by dwk » Wed Jun 16, 2021 11:28 am

Given the turnaround, I would assume that most of these titles were already in the works before the NYT article with some having their releases pushed up.

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domino harvey
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#21 Post by domino harvey » Wed Jun 16, 2021 12:14 pm

There is no question Criterion is releasing some of these titles in response to the public shaming campaign they faced. There is also, for me, no question that this is a good thing on the basic consumer level that films that were unlikely to see release from this or most boutique labels are now being prioritized and put out there

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Boosmahn
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#22 Post by Boosmahn » Wed Jun 16, 2021 3:24 pm

I think part of the criticism stems from how it appears the releases are in response to the hit-piece, not from Criterion deciding on their own to shift priorities.

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Drucker
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#23 Post by Drucker » Wed Jun 16, 2021 3:36 pm

domino harvey wrote:
Wed Jun 16, 2021 12:14 pm
There is no question Criterion is releasing some of these titles in response to the public shaming campaign they faced. There is also, for me, no question that this is a good thing on the basic consumer level that films that were unlikely to see release from this or most boutique labels are now being prioritized and put out there
It also appears to have impacted the supplements, as I just noticed Roxanne Gay is penning the essay.

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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#24 Post by pianocrash » Wed Jun 16, 2021 4:20 pm

In case anyone in the USA wants to catch this via a theater screening, AMC is holding a weeklong Black Picture Showcase to celebrate Juneteenth (including Love & Basketball, Moonlight, Do The Right Thing, Harriet, The Water Man, Fences, and Barbershop: The Next Cut) between Friday, June 18 - 24th, with about two pictures per day per location (YMMV), and $5 admission for each film.

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hearthesilence
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Re: 1097 Love & Basketball

#25 Post by hearthesilence » Wed Jun 16, 2021 4:40 pm

Charles Burnett's Nightjohn (actually a television film made for the Disney Channel) would be very fitting for Juneteenth, but I think it only exists as a broadcast master. When they showed it at MoMA for his retrospective, it was clearly an SD video projection, complete with quick fade outs and fade ins for commercial breaks.

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