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  • Writer's pictureSeth Greenberg

Basketball MVP to Shocking Acting Recognition... Kevin Garnett Floors Uncut Gems Viewers

Uncut Gems has surprised, amazed, and even disturbed audiences around the globe. Its direct point is to make you feel and understand Howard Ratner's (Adam Sandler) painful life of compulsive gambling, but indirectly makes you feel extremely uncomfortable by throwing you straight into the movie's chaos. Obviously, the Safdie brother's didn't want to direct Uncut Gems as a PG-13 (or less) movie. In addition, everyone going into the movie theater, including myself, to watch Uncut Gems knew that the point was not to be pretty and uplifting. Even understanding this, Uncut Gems somehow surpassed my, as well as many others, expectations for how disturbing the movie was going to be. Although the absurd language and grotesque scenes of violence contributed, there was never a moment of relief. This non-stopping chaos made the audience uncomfortable, but was a purposeful add to the movie to help convey Ratner's painful life.

After first hearing about Adam Sandler and Kevin Garnett starring in this type of movie, I viewed the two as "fish out of water." Adam Sandler, a former SNL member, is best known for his droll characters in comical movies such as Happy Gilmore. Knowing this, it is crazy to even believe that you would see him play the role of a compulsive gambler in a gritty movie such as Uncut Gems. In addition, Kevin Garnett is a former NBA player with little to no acting background. To add on, Uncut Gems is only the second film directed by the young Safdie brothers. These factors together call for an unpredictable movie with great potential.

Every person I have spoken with has seen Uncut Gems continues to praise Adam Sandler's performance. I thought that, at times, Sandler seemed over-the-top as well as annoying. You do have to take into account that this is Sandler's first time acting in a movie of this kind. While people still continue to praise Sandler's performance, I continue to applaud Kevin Garnett. When I tell people my opinion on Garnett's acting, people disagree and respond with "Well... he played the role of himself in the movie." This point is really interesting because, I believe, it can be harder to play the role of yourself in a movie. Also, his style of acting was not over-the-top or pushy, but instead helped him fit right into each scenario of the movie. Overall, Uncut Gems had a good storyline, but was conveyed in a long, uncomfortable, and disturbing way.

I'd be interested in hearing your opinion. To do so, go to the "Contact" section of my blog.

-Seth Greenberg

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