Kobe Bryant’s Muse (Showtime, 2015)
Why it's a slam dunk: Spike Lee directed Kobe first, using 30 cameras to capture the Black Mamba and everybody around him in 2009’s ESPN doc Kobe Doin Work, but Muse, which fixes its gaze more intimately on an introspective Bryant, surpasses it with a more minimalist approach.
Why even Lakers haters should watch: Seeing Bryant, who narrates the entire movie himself cropped tightly before a black screen, talk for an hour-plus about his motivations and philosophies, could at the very least make ideal hate-viewing.
Key revelation: Hearing how Kobe, still active at 37 after four consecutive injury-plagued seasons, psychs himself up mentally to play through pain, as when he shares, “If the game itself is more significant than the injury, you don’t feel the injury. The injury won’t get in the way because it’s not important to you.”
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Jesse Serwer is the editor of LargeUp.com, a freelance journalist and a native New Yorker currently considering new NBA options after 15 consecutive seasons of disappointment from the New York Knicks. Follow his Twitter for uncensored opinions on Colombian arepas, Jamaican rum, and Miami Bass: @Jesse Serwer.