Michael Jordan: To the Max | Chicago Reader

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Rated NR · 46 minutes · 2000

Unlike Michael Jordan, this large-format movie demonstrates mostly unrealized potential. An aphoristic voice-over—made slightly more penetrating by Laurence Fishburne's persuasive delivery—leads us through a career summary (pre-Washington Wizards) that won't be suspenseful to Jordan fans. The lower-key technical motifs include slow motion, which helps break down the complex action in game footage, and the pumped-up echo of a bouncing basketball—an effect that can't send shivers down your spine the 16th time you hear it. Everest is one of the few large-format movies I've seen that uses picture-in-picture artfully; here it's just a mechanism that pairs talking heads with illustrations. Footage of Jordan walking through a huge crowd, filmed from his point of view, encourages viewers to imagine what it might be like to be him. Directed by Jim Stern and Don Kempf.
Official Site: www.mjtothemax.com
Director: Don Kempf and James D. Stern
Writer: Jonathan Hock
Producer: Debbie Bisno, David Falk, Don Kempf, Steve Kempf, Curtis Polk, Adam Silver, Jon Skattum, James D. Stern and Gregg Winik
Cast: Michael Jordan, Phil Jackson, Doug Collins, Bob Greene, Bob Costas, Dean Smith, Deloris Jordan, Fred Lynch, Walter Iooss Jr., Bill Murray, Laurence Fishburne, David Falk, Ken Griffey Jr., Johnny "Red" Kerr, Steve Kerr, Spike Lee, Willie Mays, Stan Musial, Jack Ramsay and Ahmad Rashad

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