Pops by Chris Bailey

A young boy endures a basketball workout with his dad while remembering the night that changed his life.

A young boy is coached by his dad to excel on the basketball court, practicing for hours together as they run drills and train.

The dad is hard on him, and the kid seems close to the breaking point — until one stunning insight makes him realize just why dad is so motivated to push his son to reach his potential.

This quiet character portrait is almost minimalist in its dialogue and camerawork, but its precision and silences offer an unvarnished but poetic take on what it means to grow up in poverty and violence, and how hard someone must work to get out.

And with the gentle, graceful reveal of the reality between father and son, “Pops” offers a lesson on the power of parental love — and what it means to carry it in your heart.

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