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ESPN Films 30 for 30: Guru of Go

Bill Couturie  |  NR |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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ESPN Films 30 for 30: Guru of Go + ESPN Films 30 for 30:  Survive and Advance + ESPN Films - The Fab Five
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Product Details

  • Directors: Bill Couturie
  • Writers: ESPN
  • Producers: Team Marketing
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Team Marketing
  • DVD Release Date: March 14, 2010
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003BEE29M
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #93,852 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

By the mid-1980s Paul Westhead had worn out his welcome in the NBA. The best offer he could find came from an obscure small college with little history of basketball. In the same city where he had won an NBA championship with Magic and Kareem, Westhead was determined to perfect his non-stop run-and-gun offensive system at Loyola Marymount. His shoot-first offense appeared doomed to fail until Hank Gathers and Bo Kimble, two talented players from Westhead's hometown of Philadelphia, arrived gift-wrapped at his doorstep. With Gathers and Kimble leading a record scoring charge, Westhead's system suddenly dazzled the world of college basketball and turned conventional thinking on its head. But then, early in the 1989-90 season, Gathers collapsed during a game and was diagnosed with an abnormal heartbeat. Determined to play, Gathers returned three games later, but less than three months later, he tragically died on the court. Working with both Westhead and Kimble, Oscar-winning director Bill Couturié will tell a fast-paced and emotionally moving story of innovation, triumph and tragedy.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
(6)
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The readiness is all August 11, 2010
I'm a big fan of ESPN Films' "30 for 30" series, which excels in pairing quality filmmakers with sporting incidents - both famous and infamous - of the last 30 years. Bill Couturié's 'Guru of Go' is one of the best of the productions to air to date. I'd put only ESPN Films 30 for 30: The Two Escobars over it, but that's not totally fair to Couturié: the Zimbalist brothers were given two hours to tell their tale, and as a result it developed a richness and intensity that lifted it into a different stratosphere (and into Cannes, as a matter of fact). When ESPN saw what Couturié had delivered, they realized that this film, too, should have been accorded more time to dive in deep. At 50 minutes, it feels too short by half.

In another forum, a reviewer says "I'm curious why they didn't just make the documentary about [Hank Gathers]." Viewers of 'Guru of Go' will know why: Paul Westhead, the 'Guru' in question here, is a multi-faceted, intensely interesting man. He's a Shakespearean scholar whose life has been, at times, Shakespearean. He's experienced highs (a Lakers championship), lows (getting ousted from the Lakers head job by a passive-aggressive Magic Johnson), deeper lows (unable to get a head job elsewhere in the NBA), redemption (stunning success at Loyola Marymount University), a gut-punching turn of events (Gathers' medical condition and shocking death), a long period in exile, and - ultimately - triumph in the form of a WNBA championship.

As articulate and likable as Westhead is, he's not what you'll remember best a month or two after viewing. That honor goes to Gathers' brother, Derrick. His interview is simply a brilliant piece of filmmaming by Couturié.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fastbreak basketball taken to the nth degree August 25, 2011
OK, the Boston Celtics may have invented the fast break, but the LA Lakers Showtime era took it to the next level. Or did they?

This 30 for 30 doc shows you that "showtime" started well before Magic Johnson took it to the next level thanks to the genius of coach Paul Westhead. Yet this movie really is not about this fast-break basketball guru; it's about the Westhead-coached era Loyola Marymount college basketball team and its tragic star Hank Gathers.

I guarantee you will be fighting back the tears as you watch his life...and death on the court unfold. It's also a very uplifting tale of how sports can heal broken hearts and really the star of this whole film is Gathers' best friend, teammate Bo Kimble.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 for 30 DVD December 24, 2010
Verified Purchase
Great documentary I was a high school senior when this event occured. The DVD was new great copy looking forward to ordering more from vendor.
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