‘Uncle Drew’ has NBA nostalgia and a few good jokes, but is ultimately forgettable (Movie review)

F

or some reason, I had somewhat high expectations for “Uncle Drew.” Now, I say that with the understanding that the movie consists of NBA players in prosthetic makeup to appear as old men. So it isn’t like I was expecting something phenomenal, but I did think it could be funny. What we get is a fine movie, but it’s forgettable and not something I plan on revisiting.

“Uncle Drew” is a pretty boring move with a few good jokes. I’m not sure how Lil’ Rel became popular, but I don’t think he is a solid front man here. I feel like if he had been replaced with Kevin Hart it could have been much better.

“Uncle Drew” is a pretty boring move with a few good jokes. I’m not sure how Lil’ Rel became popular, but I don’t think he is a solid front man here.

The stars here, though, are the NBA players. Reggie Miller, Chris Webber, Shaq and Kyrie Irving (as Uncle Drew himself) are all great. The jokes that hit home for me are about the real-life players. For example, Webber’s character is reminded that there are no timeouts remaining, and Shaq’s character of course receives a jab or two about free throws.

There are just too many silly things here. (Again, I say this knowing what kind of movie this is.) For example, one of the characters is old and in poor health and he hasn’t walked in years. However, after receiving his old playing shoes as a surprise gift, he is able to get up, run and dunk a basketball. It’s too over-the-top to ignore.

The final act of the movie, the tournament, nearly pushes my rating up to a 3, but the first two-thirds is too slow, so an average 2.5 it is. If you were a fan of basketball when Webber, Miller and Shaq played, you may find this a worthwhile watch to see your favorite players, but don’t spend any money on it if you can help it.