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Love and Basketball
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this movie has strong sexuality for a PG-13, including descriptions of some sexually aggressive women, a strip basketball game, and a scene of Monica and Quincy having sex that has no nudity but is fairly explicit -- but refreshingly it includes the obvious use of a condom. A character gets drunk when she finds out that her husband has been unfaithful.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Divided into quarters like a real basketball game, LOVE & BASKETBALL shows two basketball-obsessed kids, Monica and Quincy, as they make friends on the court at age 11, play basketball in the same high school, then at the same college, and then go pro. As they deal with unfaithful, dishonest, and unsupportive parents; demanding coaches; hostile teammates; and the temptation of recruiters; their friendship blossoms into love then hate and back again.
Is it any good?
Funny how this likable movie is 20 percent about basketball and 80 percent about love and you end up cheering the leads on for about 90 percent of it. You want these two rather stubborn and talented basketball players to realize they're meant for each other even more than you want them to win the big games or get the big sports scholarships. The chemistry is great between Sanaa Lathan as Monica and Omar Epps as Quincy.
If you're into the romance enough you'll probably be forgiving as the pair face some standard-issue family conflicts and the old dating double standard: Quincy always seems to have a girl on his arm when Monica isn't around and Monica stays true throughout the movie. But the characters experience plenty of positive growth, especially when Quincy confronts his philandering father saying, "How come you couldn't be the man you kept trying to make me?"
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how people reconcile the demands of love, family, and career, and why it is that Monica and Quincy had so much trouble telling each other how they felt. Teens may also want to talk about the different views Monica and Quincy had of their relationship at different ages, and how the key element linking them through all of them was not basketball but friendship.
- In theaters: April 14, 2000
- On DVD or streaming: October 10, 2000
- Cast: Alfre Woodard, Omar Epps, Sanaa Lathan
- Director: Gina Prince-Bythewood
- Studio: Warner Bros.
- Genre: Drama
- Topics: Sports and Martial Arts
- Run time: 124 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG-13
- MPAA explanation: language, sexual references, and sexual situations
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.