17 juin 2011
Film : The first Basket (VO)
film us genre : documentaire durée : 86 mn
année : 2008 Langue : VO, anglais
For those who grew up thinking basketball was the sport of Michael Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant, it may come as a surprise to learn that it all began with people like Nat Holman, Sammy Kaplan and Red Auerbach. There hasn’t been a Jewish basketball star in the National Basketball Association for half a century, but when the sport was young, it was the children of European Jewish immigrants who took it up and dominated it.
“The First Basket,” a functional (if narrowly interesting) history lesson by the filmmaker David Vyorst, recollects the rich history of Jewish participation in basketball, starting with its embrace in the thriving immigrant community on the Lower East Side of New York and ending with a look at the continuing popularity of the game in Israel.
Using a wealth of archival material, as well as testaments from former players and coaches, Mr. Vyorst shows how basketball functioned among Jews as both a vehicle for cultural assimilation and a means of reformulating Jewish identity, which prized the scholar, not the athlete, as the masculine ideal.