Wednesday, March 25, 2015

'Kobe Bryant's Muse' is My Highlight as a Laker Fan This Season

I thought that the 2013-2014 Laker season was “rock bottom” for the franchise, but, boy, I was sure wrong.  This current Laker campaign is turning out to be even worse as the team’s horrible record has made them eligible for the top 5 draft picks (hope they get the next “great Laker” out of it, though).  Aside from the occasional highlights from young Laker players (I hope Jordan Clarkson would prove to be the next Kobe for the Lakers), there aren’t much to delight on as a Laker fan right now.  And that’s why I’m happy about the latest Showtime documentary, Kobe Bryant’s Muse.  It proved to be the thing I derived the most enjoyment out of as a Laker fan this season.  In the midst of another depressing Laker season, this beautiful documentary somewhat cheered me up.  

Kobe Bryant has always been my favorite NBA player, and I’ve come to admire his talent and drive.  Kobe Bryant’s Muse is a great thing for a fan like me because it provided the most in-depth look ever on how the Kobe Bryant we love – or, in the case of others, hate – came to be.  Kobe served as the sole voice of the documentary, and there are no other place – interviews, documentaries, etc. – where we can find Kobe being as candid and as vulnerable as he was in Kobe Bryant’s Muse.   Listening and watching Kobe talk throughout the 1-hour and 23-minute documentary – as he thoroughly and honestly revealed his thoughts, struggles, and emotions during the important points of his formative years and career – was a gripping experience. 

The documentary took a gloomy, minimalist approach in its production.  The supplementary “narrative” footage were limited to Kobe’s Achilles injury from 2013 and his recovery process.  Other video clips featured were mostly muted, and simply served as “visual aid” on whatever topic was at hand.  There were no insights or interviews of other people regarding Kobe.  There were no flash and flare.  The primary focus was (almost) all about Kobe talking to the camera, “up close and personal”, in a dim setting.  And it worked, for the tone was compatible to Kobe Bryant’s own character.  Yes, it was grim, but it was never dull.  Rather, it was direct-to-the-point, analytical, and compelling.  As a documentary, it was savvy and gorgeously-made.     

Prior to the release of this movie, Kobe Bryant was quoted as saying that he “didn’t want to write a book”, that he doesn’t “have the patience for that,” and that’s why he did Kobe Bryant’s Muse.  So, basically, Kobe Bryant’s Muse is a must-watch because this is not just any biopic/documentary.  It is Kobe’s actual autobiography.   And until Kobe finds the “patience” to write an autobiographical book – which I hope will still happen – this is the best we can get for now.    

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