×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Long Shot: The Kevin Laue Story

A natural for sports venues, the film (which recently played Gotham's Quad Cinema) could also flourish on the educational circuit.

With:
With: Kevin Laue, Fletcher Arritt, Howard Garfinkel, Patrick McKnight, Jodi Jarnigan, Jim Jarnigan, Ben Howland.

Taking a measured approach to a sensational life, “Long Shot: The Kevin Laue Story” is less the story of a young man’s growth and development than the world’s: Laue, a 6’9″ basketball phenom missing the better part of his left arm, arrives more or less fully formed in helmer Franklin Martin’s inspirational docu, resigned to his condition and determined to overcome nature’s mistake. What develops is the basketball community’s acceptance of something it would prefer not to confront, simply because it defies the norm. A natural for sports venues, the film (which recently played Gotham’s Quad Cinema) could also flourish on the educational circuit.

Despite the slam dunks and bling of the NBA, the sports world at its core is conservative, dealing as it does with statistics and formulae, and throughout “Long Shot,” one senses that Laue’s disability is not just an anomaly, but something that basketball professionals would prefer to see go away. Although they’re almost uniformly, and ultimately, supportive, most of the coaches interviewed are reluctant to calculate Laue’s chances beyond high school. “You’d have to be a really tough kid,” says UCLA coach Ben Howland. Howard Garfinkel, of the celebrated Five Star Basketball camp, is more blunt: “Not gonna happen,” he says of Laue’s chances of playing at the Division I collegiate level.

Laue’s struggle to defy the odds takes up the bulk of the docu, along with the obligatory biographical survey that sets the young man up as a paragon of stoic resolve, as well as a marvel of athleticism. The abbreviation of Laue’s arm was the result, in utero, of his developing-limb having been caught between his neck and umbilical cord; that the cord was wrapped around his neck was another problem. Moreover, Laue was born left-handed, without a left arm. Thus, everything he’s doing — as shown by the pic’s rich assortment of game clips, which make the case for his basketball fluency — is being accomplished with the “wrong” hand.

In contrast with many sports movies, factual or fictional, there’s no assurance that Laue is going to be triumphant. He doesn’t always make the last-second free throw; he occasionally crumbles under pressure. He sometimes frustrates his network of high-level supporters, who include likable high-school coach Patrick McKnight and the more prickly but stalwart Fletcher Arritt of Fork Union Military Academy (where Laue transfers in hopes of being scouted). While he gets a wealth of support from his mother and stepfather, Jodi and Jim Jarnigan, he nurses his grief for his late father, Wayne, who appears here in video footage, predicting the kinds of things for Kevin that are shown to be fulfilled in “Long Shot.” It’s sentimental, of course, as well as irresistible.

Tech credits are fine; Robin Soper’s music is supportive without being intrusive, and the game sequences look polished.

Long Shot: The Kevin Laue Story

Production: A Dutchmen Films presentation. Produced by Billy Rafferty, Franklin Martin. Executive producers, Dain Blair, Julian McMahon, Charles Loventhal. Co-producers, Tyler Lindsay, Skip Connors. Directed, written by Franklin Martin.

Crew: Camera (color), Martin, Eli Kabbilio, Billy Rafferty, Phil Wall; editors, Sam Citron, Tyler Lindsay, Jason Summers; music, Robin Soper; music supervisor, Dain Blair; sound, Gary Summers; associate producer, Stan Cassio. Reviewed on DVD, Nov. 27, 2012. Running time: 93 MIN.

With: With: Kevin Laue, Fletcher Arritt, Howard Garfinkel, Patrick McKnight, Jodi Jarnigan, Jim Jarnigan, Ben Howland.

More Film

  • Nicole Kidman Meryl Streep

    Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman to Star in Ryan Murphy's 'The Prom' at Netflix

    Ryan Murphy enlisted a star-studded cast for his upcoming Netflix movie “The Prom,” an adaptation of the Tony-nominated Broadway musical. Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, Awkwafina, James Corden, Ariana Grande, Keegan-Michael Key and Andrew Rannells are among the A-listers bringing “The Prom” to screens. “The Prom” follows a lesbian student in the fictional conservative town of [...]

  • Viktor Dvorak, Anna Geislerova Join Vaclav

    Viktor Dvorak, Anna Geislerova Join Václav Havel Biopic

    Viktor Dvorak has been cast in “Havel,” a biopic of Václav Havel, as the Czech playwright, dissident and national leader. Anna Geislerova, who starred in Oscar nominated “Zelary,” plays his wife, Olga Havlova. Jiri Bartoska, the president of Karlovy Vary Film Festival, will appear in the film as “Professor,” inspired by Czech philosopher Jan Patocka. [...]

  • Daniel Craig

    'Bond 25' First Footage Sees Daniel Craig Back as 007

    After suffering a series of setbacks, including finding a new director and Daniel Craig’s on-set injury, “Bond 25” production is officially underway. A new behind-the-scenes clip of the upcoming James Bond film features Craig and helmer Cary Joji Fukunaga at work in the Caribbean. The minute-long footage didn’t reveal much about the still-untitled movie, though [...]

  • (L to R) Marco Graf as

    ‘Roma,’ ‘The Good Girls’ Top Mexico’s Ariel Academy Awards

    The Mexican Academy of Arts and Cinematographic Sciences hosted the 61st edition of their Ariel Awards on Monday evening, where Alfonso Cuarón’s “Roma” and Alejandra Márquez Abella’s “The Good Girls” stood out among the winners. Perhaps the most surprising thing about Cuarón’s “Roma” scooping best picture is that it’s only the second of his films to [...]

  • The Eight Hundred (The 800)

    Already Pulled From Shanghai Festival, 'The Eight Hundred' Cancels Its China Release

    Already pulled from its prestigious spot as the opener of the Shanghai International Film Festival, war epic “The Eight Hundred” has been dealt a further below with the cancellation of its scheduled release in China next week. In a terse announcement on its official Weibo account, the film said late Tuesday that, “after consultation between [...]

  • Méndez Esparza, Fernando Franco, Villaronga Projects

    Projects By Mendez Esparza, Fernando Franco and Villaronga at Small Is Biutiful

    Antonio Méndez Esparza’s “Que nadie duerma,” Fernando Franco’s “La consagración de la primavera” and Agustí Villaronga’s “3.000 obstáculos” figure among the seven projects to be pitched at Paris’ Small Is Biutiful forum. The closing event for the alternative Spanish film festival Dífferent 12!, Small Is Biutiful takes place June 26, bringing together French distributors and [...]

  • Judi Dench

    Judi Dench Says Works by Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey Should Be Respected

    Veteran British star Judi Dench has said that the work produced by Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey should be separated from the offenses they are alleged to have committed. Both Weinstein and Spacey face charges of sexual assault in the U.S., which they deny, and have been investigated in other jurisdictions as well, including Britain. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content