Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Announcement- SXSW World Premiere

The Announcement is the true story of how Earvin "Magic" Johnson announced he had the HIV virus and how that announcement changed his life as well as almost every life on the planet. The documentary made its world debut at the SXSW Film Festival in Austin, TX today. The director likened this event to the JFK assassination claiming that everyone remembers where they were on the day Magic met the media at the Forum and announced his retirement from the NBA. I would have to disagree with that statement. I think the legacy that Magic continued after his announcement was what everyone remembers. The film does an amazing job at depicting this young kid who learned the value of hard work from his father and to do that hard work with a smile from his mother. His focus on not just playing basketball but winning championships was almost as addicting as that big goofy smile he had while doing it.

While the film touched on the depression and the difficult time Johnson felt after he discovered he had HIV, he also highlighted the fact that from day one he was convinced he could beat it and he wouldn't just give up and die. He continued on to be such a powerful voice for HIV/AIDS as the first "regular guy" who could just get it. His positivity inspired people to continue to fight and hope who had been diagnosed with the virus. His intensity, drive, and commitment forced those in power to listen and those with power and knowledge to create a solution.

This was an amazing film and was very touching. While my good friend hates sports movies for being overly inspirational, this was a movie more about a man with a disease that he was determined to overcome, than a underdog sports movie. It was also a lot of fun to see him play again. What an incredible player- an entertainer both by scoring and by selflessly passing the ball in the most extraordinary ways. I highly recommend this movie! I give it a 4.5 out of 5. It will be playing on ESPN tomorrow night and I would assume will be repeated quite often. Check it out!!

Movie poster from:

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