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2 reviews, 11 user ratings

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by Peter Sobczynski

"Martin Lawrence AND Breckin Meyer-do you need to know more than that?"
1 stars

You know how there will occasionally be a scene in a movie where a character is watching a movie on the tube or in a theater and the filmmakers have decided to create their own film instead of relying on clips from something else? Generally, these made-up clips are jarring because they always look or sound silly and never quite seem like real movies that people would pay to produce and see–after all, if they were convincing, the chances are likely that they would be turned into films themselves instead of generic background filler. The new family sports comedy (to demean three perfectly good words in a row) “Rebound,” on the other hand, feels like one of those fake clips stretched to 87 minutes. In fact, this is the kind of movie where you look at the beginning of every new scene for a television so you can concentrate on what it is playing in the background than the nonsense in the foreground.

Martin Lawrence, in what might have been considered the nadir of his career if he had never made “Bad Boys II,” stars as Ray McCormick, a high-profile college basketball coach who is essentially a big ball of unchecked rage who has let his love of the game disappear in a sea of endorsement deals and technical fouls. When one of his sideline rants goes too far and he winds up killing the opposing team’s mascot, Ray is threatened with a lifetime suspension from the NCBA (thankfully the NCAA apparently had the good sense not to come anywhere near this film) unless he can prove that he can coach without flipping out.

Trouble is, he finds himself blackballed from the industry and the only job offer his hot-shot agent (Breckin Meyer) gets is from his former junior-high school–a run-down dump where the team seems to have been cherry-picked from those chosen last in gym class. One is a ball-hog. One is self-absorbed. One wears goggles everywhere. One is fat and the last one, in a show of solidarity to those unlucky enough to see this film, throws up a lot. (Actually this was the one part of the film I actually believed–this seemed like exactly the kind of deal that would be brokered by a sports agent played by Breckin Meyer.)

Having studied his game films–in this case being “Kicking and Screaming,” “Coach Carter” and the “Mighty Ducks” and “Bad News Bears” sagas entire–Ray knows exactly what to do. He must start by blowing the kids off until their hapless play forces him to finally take action to whip them into a team. He must go off and recruit a couple of ringers to beef up the team–why yes, one of them is a tough girl, now that you mention it! He must make an enemy of an evil rival coach (Patrick Warburton) who represents all that is wrong with youth sports and make a friend of the cute mom (Wendy Raquel Robinson) of one of his players. Finally, he must realize that when the time comes for the NCBA (I love saying that) to hold his reinstatement meeting, it will be the very same afternoon as his team’s championship game–furthermore, he will know that even though he knows that he won’t take the job (you know, those kids have taught him valuable lessons and such), he will still go to the meeting anyway simply so he can be late for the game and everyone can think that he has blown them off until he appears in the ta-daa nick of time.

You might think that such a plot has been done so many times in the past that there is absolutely nothing new to be derived from it and in the case of “Rebound,” you would be correct. Other films have mined this material more successfully because they have remembered to bring something fresh to the table–the original “Bad News Bears” (still the high-water mark for the genre) had some savvy social satire and a great Walter Matthau performance and the recent “Kicking and Screaming” had some inspired bits from Will Ferrell and the surreal sight of Robert Duvall sharing the screen with Mike Ditka. “Rebound,” on the other hand, has nothing along those lines to offer viewers–its idea of comic genius is to trot out a heavily made-up Lawrence in a secondary role as the comedic relief in what is, after all, supposed to be a comedy. Most of the other sights in the film are the kind of stomach-churning material that will cheer only the most bored children–I counted four barfing jokes, two basketballs in the crotch and innumerable plugs for that Tom Arnold show on FoxSports. (The funniest joke comes in the credits when it is revealed that it took five writers to come up with a story and screenplay that you and I could have coughed up one morning before lunch, depending on our typing skills.)

Here’s an idea for a movie. A spoiled movie star finds his career in the toilet after a string of bombs and highly questionable events in his personal life. In a desperate attempt to salvage his career, he agrees to star in a brainless retread in which he can toothlessly mock his public persona by surrounding himself with a bunch of charmless kid actors–in my version, the guy goes nuts and winds up running down the freeway naked and waving a gun. Any executives at Fox who are reading this–feel free to use this idea for a future film (I require only 10% of the gross and one of those jumbo-sized cardboard stand-ups of Angelina Jolie left over from “Mr and Mrs Smith” as payment) as I guarantee that it would reap greater rewards, both financial and artistic, than the likes of “Rebound.”

link directly to this review at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=12503&reviewer=389
originally posted: 07/01/05 00:01:54
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User Comments

10/30/08 Shaun Wallner Very Boring! 1 stars
9/12/06 Bmac more greatness by martin lawrence 5 stars
6/07/06 Ashley Hinz Just ok, could have been much better. 3 stars
5/15/06 bmac this movie had me on the edge of my seet 5 stars
9/09/05 Tiffany Faye Hawthorne If performance of opposing coach doesn't win razzie, the razzies mean nothing! 2 stars
7/10/05 8=====D yet another shitty martin movie 1 stars
7/07/05 Sorry I Wasted my Cash In hind-sight: I don't know if I would even waste time watching this when it hits free tv. 1 stars
7/07/05 Naka Martin Lawrence has and always will sucks ass. 1 stars
7/06/05 Cedric i like Martin 4 stars
7/01/05 BoyInTheDesignerBubble Martin Lawrence looks just like the racist postage stamp from Mexico. I hate him! 1 stars
7/01/05 brody i liked it 5 stars
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  01-Jul-2005 (PG)
  DVD: 20-Dec-2005



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