Wow, what a Will Smith game

by time news

The movie “Winning Family” is an unconventional but very effective sports drama that made me cry like a baby on several different occasions. Will Smith, in one of his best dramatic roles to date (if not the), stars as Richard Williams, a stubborn, obsessive and controversial type from Compton, California, who has overcome countless obstacles to make his daughters, tennis players Venus and Serena Williams, two of the most athletic. The most successful, famous and rich in the world.

As you may know, even before Venus and Serena were born, Richard declared that they were going to be tennis champions. He wrote a detailed program of 80 pages, and together with his wife began to train them from the age of zero, more or less. Everyone told him he was crazy. Everyone told him he had no chance. Everyone told him he was exaggerating and that he was too tough on his girls, that he did not have the money to pay coaches and equipment, that tennis was not a sport for African Americans. But Richard did not listen. Sun, rain, racism – nothing stopped him (or his daughters). It seems to me that you know how the story ends.

Naturally, since the film was co-produced by the Star Sisters (played by the talented Sania Sydney and Demi Singleton), the less flattering parts of Williams Sr.’s resume and the darker sides of his personality occupy a relatively small volume here (if at all). But it is likely that only a few will come to see this film in search of a history lesson or a parenting lesson. Instead, “Winning Family” focuses on the exciting and inspiring. And there is nothing more exciting and inspiring in Hollywood sports movies than stories about determined and faith-filled outsiders who succeed against all odds.

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The plot takes place in the late 80s and early 90s, and moves rhythmically between moments of success and crisis. After many persuasion efforts, Richard the Snooze manages to find professional coaches for his daughters (one played by Tony Goldwyn, the other by John Brenthal. Both are excellent), and get his family out of Compton. Venus and Serena make a serious leap and start gaining a reputation. But then Richard surprises everyone again when he decides to prevent his daughters from competing in the youth competition round – a very unusual move that provokes a lot of criticism.

“Winning Family,” signed by anonymous director Reinaldo Marcus Green, lasts about two and a half hours, and there is really no justification for it. But even if it could have been shortened by 15-15 minutes, it is still entertaining and touching almost its entire length, and the main reason for this is the sweeping and humane appearance of Smith (who is expected to be nominated for a third Oscar). Throughout the film, Richard is seen bragging, crying, beating monologues, getting beaten up and humiliated, and in general, doing everything to make his plan come true and for his daughters to have a better life than the life he had. But he does it all from a defeated and submissive place. From a crouched and sad place. I confess. From time to time I forgot I was watching Will Smith, and it’s something that has not happened to me yet.

Score: 7

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