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Review: The Fab Five (2011)

ESPN’s  30 for 30 series is the place to be if you have a thing for sports documentaries. As a not only a doc fan, but a huge follower of basketball, I was dying to check out their take on the phenomenon that hit Michigan known as The Fab Five. Since I was too young to remember the impact of the five freshman that shook the college basketball nation, the film was more informational than remembrance for me.

There have been greater teams basketball history, but the University of Michigan’s 1991 freshman class, who took over all five starting positions is one of the most influential teams; an influence that stretched past the court. Although they *SPOILER* never actually won a championship, the very way they lost was amazing (Just ask Chris Webber). Baggy shorts, black shoes and socks were just the outward stuff that others replicated. What truly was imitated was the style that just dripped off of their play.

The niche of the movie is pretty much just sports fans. There isn’t really anything endearing enough for it to go beyond that spectrum. While some commentator’s might say “it’s a story for everyone”, it really isn’t. If you are a sports fan however, it is a really good doc. For how good it is, I keep finding myself wondering how much better it would have been if aforementioned Chris Webber had chosen to participate in the development of the film. His absence, as great as his inclusion might have been, still doesn’t leaving any sort of gaping hole in the film. Although most people either love the Fab Five or hate them, you have to admit they are mesmerizing as ever even two decades later.

My Rating: B+


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