The Redeem Team is a sports Netflix documentary directed by Jon Weinbach and tells the story of the 2008 Beijing Olympic USA basketball team.
In 2004, the USA basketball team gets humiliated in Athen during the Olympics. As a result, they are mocked as the “Cream Team.” As 2008 approaches, the Olympic Committee decides that they have to redeem the sport and tap Duke coach Mike “Coach K” Krzyzewski to coach the line-up. LeBron James, Dwayne Wade, and later Kobe Bryant all get tapped to represent the USA in Beijing.
The documentary definitely shows the disappointment and the crisis that the team felt after that 2004 humiliation. Hearing it from the team’s perspective, they claimed they were not coached well and that some of their best teammates were benched. I am not a basketball expert, so I cannot give an opinion from that point of view, but the players seemed genuine about this point.
It was also interesting hearing how most of the younger players want to have fun and party, but when Bryant arrived, things changed. I definitely felt pulled into their story and it is presented well in this feature. I was excited to see that, at least while they were on the Olympic team, they praised America and stated how they were honored to represent the USA in China.
Except for a weird tie-in to Operation: Iraqi Freedom, the movie avoids politics and focused on the build-up and training to get to the Olympics. I found it interesting and loved hearing from the players about their strategy for winning against the greatest athletes from around the world.
Check out the trailer below:
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Foul language, Some sports violence
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