Introducing his never before seen 'leaping one-hander' to the masses on a national level, Kenny Sailors quickly grew to be a fan favorite while leading his Wyoming Cowboys to the Collegiate National Championship in Madison Square Garden in 1943. But after playing on several losing teams in an unstable, emerging league now known as the NBA, Kenny disappeared into the Alaskan wilderness only to be forgotten by the sport he helped pioneer. Now, nearly sixty years later, the multitude of people he has touched along the way have forced Kenny’s humble reemergence.
"Take away the business, the media, the hype around the game. If you want to see pure love, look at Kenny." Kevin Durant's view of the subject of "Jump Shot" captures well the spirit of the documentary and the man at its center - a humble, unlikely star who saw basketball more as a means to connect with and help others than a path to fame.
Using artful and original story-telling techniques, director Jacob Hamilton and his team craft a powerful retelling of the story of one of basketball's most influential players who, until now, has been too often forgotten. Sailors is an easily-likable subject and his inspiring story goes far beyond the court, leaving the viewer fulfilled in more than just learning who introduced the jump shot. This documentary is one to cheer for.
Reviewed by jmedlin-730729 / 10
I watched this film for the basketball, got a lot more than that
Wow. I loved this documentary. From the animations, to the old videos of Mr. Sailors, and everything in between, the film was wonderfully crafted and orchestrated to tell a story about significantly more than sports. While I love basketball and am thankful to understand more about the origins of the game, I'm even more thankful to know that a man like Kenny Sailors was advocating for the people he encountered because of basketball. This is a beautiful story. Job well-done by Jacob Hamilton.
Reviewed by danieljim-810359 / 10
A movie filled to the brim with humanity
At it's core, Jump Shot is a biography film about Kenny Sailors. It's no surprise you don't know his name, and Kenny Sailors would be the last person to list his accomplishments; of which there are many. Marine, advocate for women's athletics, pioneer in both the literal and metaphorical sense. The reason he is of interest to the makers of the film is that Kenny Sailor is likely the inventor of the jump shot. If you want an inside look on how this literal game changer came about, you will get it. But Jump Shot turns into so much more than that. It feels like a it stumbled onto it's deeper meaning, because once they let Kenny Sailors talk he shared his enlightenment. Listening to him is like a warm embrace, he just radiates kindness. Even at the advanced age of ninety two he is genial and forthcoming, and not at all bitter about his lack of credit for inventing the jump shot. His life has been well spent, and that's the wonder of Jump Shot. Kenny Sailors seems to have found the secret to a happy life, and he has lived his with no regrets. The more we listen the greater sense of awe we have at this man, at the sheer amount of joy he has over his many years. He speaks of faith, of family, of honor, and from that we realize what matters. Jump Shot was not the movie I was expecting, and I'm grateful for it.