The First Basket
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David Vyorst's documentary The First Basket takes a look at the early days of the Basketball Association of America. When it was formed in 1946, the majority of players were Jewish -- a fact that certainly is not true of American basketball just 60 years later. This film showcases how these athletes provided inspiration for Jews suffering discrimination. ~ Perry Seibert, Rovi
Directed By
© Laemmie/Zeller Films
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 64%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It uncovers a fascinating and largely forgotten chapter of the game's history that is well worth revisiting."
‑ Sam Adams, Los Angeles Times
"The First Basket, a functional (if narrowly interesting) history lesson by the filmmaker David Vyorst, recollects the rich history of Jewish participation in basketball."
‑ Nathan Lee, New York Times
"The First Basket is a moderately interesting documentary about a moderately interesting subject."
‑ Mark Keizer, Boxoffice Magazine
"A valuable reminder that for nearly three decades, basketball was dominated by Jewish players -- and coaches who found the sport an ideal vehicle for assimilation in the United States."
‑ Lou Lumenick, New York Post
"Students of the game will find the archival footage interesting, but casual filmgoers will likely be frustrated by the slavish on-court devotion to unflashy fundamentals and the inexcusable lack of dunking."
‑ Drew Toal, Time Out New York
"Filled with terrific archival footage, The Last Basket is engrossing and fun, but tends to go on a bit too long."
‑ Lewis Beale, Film Journal International
"When the history of the sport is allowed to unfold through the reminiscences of geriatric Yiddish pros, pic approaches the richness of its impressive archival trove. Too often, however, director David Vyorst's chauvinistic agenda intrudes."
‑ Ronnie Scheib, Variety
"David Vyorst's comprehensive and celebratory documentary presents the stats in one easy-to-follow, nicely organized 86 minutes."
‑ Bob Strauss, Los Angeles Daily News
"Unforgiveable are the kitschy, Photoshopped graphics that maddeningly mock the defenseless interviewees from the sidelines."
‑ Joseph Jon Lanthier, Slant Magazine
More reviews for The First Basket on Rotten Tomatoes