More Than a Game

This inspiring documentary, gleaned from family videos, school photos, sports clippings, interviews and various other sources, shows us the development of a close-knit group of chums in Akron, Ohio, who started shooting hoops at their local Salvation Army gym when they were in elementary school. Their coach was one boy's father who had been a football player in school. He had to learn about basketball because that was his son's sport of choice.

Even before they entered high school, these boys showed unity and determination, they switched to a different school because the first basketball coach wouldn't accept one of them (he was too short). This little 4'11" whiz proved to be a remarkable scorer and was a major contributor to their overall success. This loyal gang of freshmen became a well-oiled machine that stood high-school basketball on its ear in the United States.

During their final year, the Akron Fab Five won the National High School Basketball Championship despite the suspension of key player LeBron James during a preliminary game because he had been given two t-shirts by a local sporting goods store (you'll love this game!). He appealed, and his suspension was revoked, so he was able to play out his senior year. Currently an NBA superstar, James is executive producer of this film. He insisted that ALL of his friends be featured, that it not be just a puff piece about him.

We see interviews with each member of the Fab Five and his family, any one of which would be a captivating story. Tales of family pride, family sacrifice and family struggles are the stuff of legend. Judicious editing unfolds each story in its own time, highlighting each player in turn, showing his prowess on the court as well as his family dynamics and his relationship with his four other friends; we see they are decent hard- working folks, one and all.

The little guy's father was shanghaied into the head coaching job when their first high school coach was recruited by a college, so this poor fellow had his own struggle, which is quite a story by itself. He came to realize that his job was not only to coach winning basketball, but to teach his boys how to be men.