Adam Sandler awakens unbridled love, fanaticism, but also annoyance. Her comedy cinema, the one she sells to Netflix for some years, that no one likes but everyone watches, it is always questioned. The man does his business, exploits his most criticized profile and from time to time stands out in a dramatic role, not to prove anything to anyone, but because he likes it. In Claw he does the latter and, on top of that, mixes it with one of his passions: basketball.
It is produced by Lebron James in association with the producer of Sandler, Happy Madison, and both achieved this good sports drama that meets the requirements of the genre without going too far from the script, but executed with great skill. However, it has two fundamental pieces that make it better than other similar ones: Adam Sandler at a great level and many faces of the NBA (players, technicians, etc.) to give more credibility to the story.
Sandler It has two clear facets: absurd comedy and deep drama with broken, overwhelmed or passionate characters. To date the best performances of him in the drama were intoxicated with love Y diamond in the roughbut in comedy he has an enormous career with titles that remain in everyone’s memory: Happy Gilmore, A cool dad, as if it were the first time and so many others. However, the actor is well remembered when he decides to step out of his regular position as a comedy actor and take on a riskier performance in the drama. Here he achieves it with a lot of skill without losing grace.
In this film directed by Jeremiah Zagar (We the Animals), a director who comes from documentaries, Sandler plays Stanley Sugerman, a talent scout who travels the world trying to find the next star of the NBA. His work forced him to miss nine of his daughter’s birthdays, but it made him an indispensable part of the Philadelphia 76ersteam chaired by the character of Robert Duvall. After a meeting to define the incorporation of a new player and that pitted him against the character of Ben Foster, son of the team’s owner, it seems that Stanley will finally manage to keep a place on the team’s coaching staff, a decision made by the president of the franchise that would somehow put him back on the court after a forced retirement from professional basketball. But three months later, the one played by Duvall dies and Stanley must return to the 5-star hotels to find the new figure of the team.
On his first trip he meets Bo Cruz (Juancho Hernangómez, a professional player who plays for the Utah Jazz), a 22-year-old Spaniard whose main virtue is defense and who bets on street games. With a promising future in professional basketball, Stanley will do everything to become a new player for the 76ers. Here begins the best of the film: the arrival of the Spanish player in the United States, the first complications with his documents, Stanley’s old fight with the now owner of the club and all the training part of the player to show that he is in a position to enter the best basketball league in the world.
The context is unbeatable for what follows: Philly, training on the streets, being considered a minor player to break into the elite of the sport, etc., are elements that immediately take you to the movies of Rockybut also further here in time believe as the natural heir. A lot of style in its montage and soundtrack, impossible not to feel like you’re in a commercial for Nike, Jordan or even the NBA itself, but without losing the drama with a solid base that is sustained by the performance of Adam Sandler. Winks and prominent figures are the delight for those who like sports in real life.
Predictable at times, but almost seamless, Claw is an excellent sports drama that has the support of the entire NBA, which makes it believable enough in terms of procedures and even better when it becomes a parade of figures from yesterday and today. It should be noted that here Lebron James returns to bet on bringing basketball to fiction after the unpleasant experience of Space Jam: A New Legacy.
However, the best virtue of the film are those moments of intimacy achieved by the two protagonists. The master and disciple relationship that is built, which gives them a new chance in the sport, but also to heal old personal wounds and heavy absences. An excellent opportunity to return to those emotional sports dramas, but with all the class of an actor like Adam Sandler.
Claw premieres this Wednesday, June 8 at Netflix.
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“Claw”: Adam Sandler shows all his talent in the good Netflix sports drama