Celtic Pride

"Movie Magazine International" Review

(Air Date: Week Of 4/24/96)

By Alex Lau

What do Daniel Stern, Dan Aykroyd and Damon Wayans have in common? Well, besides having first names that start with "D-A," not much, but now they all star in the new movie "Celtic Pride."

Stern plays a frustrated gym teacher who used to be a star in high school basketball. Aykroyd plays his buddy, a plumber who's so into sports he can spout statistics about any game he's ever seen. They're so superstitious that when Stern's wife breaks up with him, they both note that the last time that happened the Celtics won the NBA championship.

The Celtics don't live up to it, though, as Utah Jazz superstar Lewis Scott, played by Wayans, single-handedly brings them down in the sixth game of the Finals at the Boston Garden. How can our "heroes" prevent Scott from defeating their beloved Celtics in the seventh and final game? Easy... by kidnapping him!

Of course, as you can probably already tell, the plot is more suited to a half-hour episode of "Cheers" than a full-length feature film. Aykroyd, who hasn't had a hit since "Trading Places," is awkwardly cast as the same age as Stern, who hasn't had a hit since "Home Alone." Wayans, who hasn't really had a hit yet, gets off a few one-liners as the trash-talking Scott, but he fails to gain any sympathy for his plight.

Director Tom DeCerchio just doesn't have a lot to work with, here, but he compounds the problem with cartoony characterizations and basketball action sequences that just look staged.

Yes, there are a couple of entertaining moments, but most of the jokes really fall flat and it ends up a big disappointment. Overall, "Celtic Pride" is nothing to be proud about.

Copyright 1996 Alex Lau

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