Above the Rim

March 23rd, 1994


Above the Rim

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Still of Tupac Shakur and Wood Harris in Above the RimAbove the RimAbove the RimStill of Leon and Duane Martin in Above the RimStill of Marlon Wayans and Duane Martin in Above the RimStill of Tupac Shakur and Leon in Above the Rim

Story of a promising high school basketball star and his relationships with two brothers, one a drug dealer and the other a former basketball star fallen on hard times and now employed as a security guard.

Release Year: 1994

Rating: 6.1/10 (4,859 voted)

Director: Jeff Pollack

Stars: Duane Martin, Tupac Shakur, Leon

Story of Kyle-Lee Watson, a promising high school basketball star, and his relationships with Birdie, a powerful drug dealer, and Birdie's brother, Thomas 'Shep' Sheppard, himself once a promising high school star at Kyle's school, now employed as a security guard.

Writers: Jeff Pollack, Benny Medina

Duane Martin - Kyle Lee Watson
Leon - Shep
Tupac Shakur - Birdie
David Bailey - Rollins
Tonya Pinkins - Mailika
Marlon Wayans - Bugaloo
Bernie Mac - Flip
Byron Minns - Monroe
Wood Harris - Motaw (as Sherwin David Harris)
Shawn Michael Howard - Bobby
Henry Simmons - Starnes
Iris Little Thomas - Waitress
Michael Rispoli - Richie
Eric Nies - Montrose
Bill Rafferty - Himself (as Bill Raftery)

Taglines: Some games you play. Some games play you.

Release Date: 23 March 1994

Filming Locations: New York City, New York, USA

Gross: $16,036,534 (USA)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

Tonya Pinkins played Duane Martin's mother although in real life, Tonya is only 3 years Duane's senior.

Continuity: In the movie's first scene Shepard and Nutso are playing ball on a rooftop with a huge wall and glass window behind the basketball hoop. When Nutso falls off of the roof the wall completely disappears.

Shep: You hear that Nutso? The boy here says he owes me. HE owes ME. Are we even? ARE WE EVEN? You don't owe me nothin. You owe yourself and ones who cared to get you here. Believe me. I know.

User Review

The most underrated basketball movie ever


This movie deserves more credit then critics should give. This movie had an all star cast as the up and coming Marlon Wayans,Tupac Shakur,Leon,Duane Martin,Henry Simmons,Bernie Mac,and the lovely Tonya Pinkins. Each actor played their part magnificiently and it was hip,touching,and realistic. The beginning was a little off when Leon dreamed of his best friend's death and then focused mainly on Duane Martin's basketball skills,and him trying to get into Georgetown University. Marlon Wayans was the comic relief in the film who's been released from prison. Bernie Mac was the homeless man who was interested in basketball but never made it. Tupac was the ruthless street hustler and the coach of a dirty playing basketball team. There were other former R&B stars who starred in the movie but only had small parts. To wrap it up in a nutshell Above the rim to me is one of the most memorable urban basketball movies I've ever saw.


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