Linsanity is a 2013 documentary about NBA player Jeremy Lin and his rise to international stardom. Director Evan Jackson Leong and narrator Daniel Dae Kim tell the story one of the most famous athletes in the world, a spectacular feat considering he’s not that great of a player and barely managed to eke his way into the NBA. Everybody loves inspirational sports stories like Rudy, but Lin’s journey was way more impressive. Lin was one of the best high school players in California, but he was hardly recruited by any colleges because he didn’t fit the mold. By not fitting the mold, I mean that nobody wanted him because he’s Asian. He didn’t get any athletic scholarships and ended up going to Harvard because he would have a place on the team. He went undrafted after college, but eventually signed with the Golden State Warriors. He didn’t get much playing time and they waived him at the end of the season. The Houston Rockets picked him up and they waived him too. He managed to get a gig with the New York Knicks but he still wasn’t getting a chance to play.
The Knicks were in a bit of a slump and they decided to mix things up a bit by giving Lin some playing time. He took advantage and had twenty-five points, seven assists, and five rebounds in thirty-six minutes. That was enough to grant him a start the next game and he dominated again. Then he dominated the game after that. And the game after that. All in all, he had a nine game stretch where he averaged twenty-five points and nine assists in thirty-nine minutes per game. He became a superstar virtually overnight. Something special was happening and everyone wanted to be a part of it. It could only be described as Linsanity.
Linsanity takes you back to Jeremy’s childhood, how he inherited his love for the game from his father, the bond he shares with his brothers, and his dislike for playing piano. They stress his values in life are religion, family, and basketball (in that order). The filmmakers also show you Lin’s impact on the Asian community. He became a role model, albeit somewhat reluctantly. Jeremy Lin is not a great basketball player, but he is capable of great things. He inspired the world for fifteen days in February of 2012 and etched himself into our collective memory. Relive Linsanity with Linsanity. I watched it on Netflix. You should too.
Critically Rated at 14/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young