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2008-2009 NBA Champions: Los Angeles Lakers
2008-2009 NBA Champions Los Angeles Lakers
Actors: Phil Jackson, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom, Derek Fisher
Genres: Sports
NR     2009

In a blockbuster performance deserving of Hollywood, the Los Angeles Lakers added the latest sequel to their championship legacy behind their leading man, Finals MVP Kobe Bryant.. In the series billed as Disneyland vs. Dis...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Phil Jackson, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom, Derek Fisher
Genres: Sports
Sub-Genres: Basketball
Studio: Warner Home Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 07/14/2009
Original Release Date: 01/01/2009
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2009
Release Year: 2009
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

A must have DVD for any Lakers or Kobe fan
SocraticMethod | Los Angeles, CA | 07/17/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The DVD recaps the 2008-2009 season for the Lakers, starting with a brief recap of the loss to the Celtics in the 2007-2008 NBA Finals. The first 20 minutes or so covers highlights of the regular season with emphasis on bigger games such as the Christmas Day game against Boston and the road game against Cleveland (giving Cleveland their first home loss of the season), and Kobe's 61 point game in Madison Square Garden. It's also great that they show things such as Bynum getting injured again and the struggle to play without him. The next 10-15 minutes covers the Western Conference playoff matchups (Utah briefly, Houston, and Denver). The Houston and Denver series go more in depth since they were longer, harder fought series. The final 20-25 minutes or so covers each game of the NBA finals against Orlando, with a brief section on Orlando's great playoff run leading up to the Finals.

What I love about this DVD is that they not only cover most of the important games I mentioned, but they show some of the most memorable plays from those games and from the playoffs, it really got me hyped up over last season. They show some good locker room footage during the playoffs as well which hasn't been aired before, and they show a fair amount of the parade footage in the credits.

Unfortunately, the main feature is only 60 minutes long, which I wish they would've made into at least 90-120 minutes which shows how epic and long an NBA season (especially the playoffs) is. I wish they would've briefly touched on things like trading Radmanovic for Brown (who really contributed down the strech) and Morrison, and showing a little more of the competition such as showing a little bit about the fight for 1st place against the Cavs, but things like this may have been too insignificant and took away focus from the Lakers so it's understandable why they left things like these out. The main problem I have with this DVD however, is that while ALL the footage is shot in 16:9 aspect ratio, it is presented in 4:3 fullscreen, which means on an HDTV there are large black borders around the entire image, and the feature is much smaller. I assume they did this to cater towards SDTV owners and not have to worry about making different formats or using pan & scan, but it kind of sucks that when many people have HDTVs these days, they're still catering towards old sets. However, this is still not a big deal overall since I got used to it, and the image still looks great.

While the main feature is only 60 minutes, there are plenty of extra features on the DVD to help justify purchasing it. Here's an overview of them:

Kobe Slideshow - A brief interview with Kobe showing him pictures of his career while Kobe discusses them.

Pau Gasol Slideshow - Pretty much the same thing as the Kobe slideshow but with more video and is mostly taken from Inside the NBA with Ahmad Rashad.

Boston at LA, X-Mas Day, All-Access - A really good recap of the Xmas Day game with the best highlights, and good pre-game footage. This feature was a great way of showing how the 2008-2009 Lakers evolved from the previous year.

Cleveland at LA, 1/19/09, All-Access - Same as the Boston one for the most part. Very good as well.

Lakers Roundtable - A pretty good feature which has the Showtime era Lakers sitting around each other talking about their days, etc. It's a good feature, albeit totally unrelated to this year's team.

4th Quarter Game 7 vs. Houston - While being a great series, this game was a blowout and isn't really worth watching by the 4th quarter. I don't see why they put this on the DVD. Pretty much any other game in the series would've been more approriate.

4th Quarter Game 6 vs. Denver - While also a good series, this was another blowout which isn't worth watching really by the 4th. This and the Game 7 vs. Houston shouldn't have been on here, and they should've put Game 4 vs. Orlando and Game 1 vs. Denver.

Timeout: Trevor Ariza - less than 3 minutes long, and is pretty much irrelevant. It shows Ariza answering trivial questions, and seems like the type of video they'd show during a timeout at the game. Hence the title I guess.

Spotlight: Derek Fisher - A 3 minute video of Fisher during the Finals, which seems to show more about Kobe than Fisher and doesn't really show Fisher's significance unfortunately.

Focus: Lamar Odom - Another 3 minute video highlighting Odom's career and showing some good footage of his early career with the Clippers, then moving to Miami, and then the Lakers and his ups and downs there. This video is actually really good at showing Lamar's talent and his career very briefly.

Kobe 81 - My favorite extra feature on the DVD. This doesn't just show highlights of his 81 point game, but it is also an interview with Kobe taken this 2009 season on the road in Memphis in his hotel room, taking about how the game went, how he felt, his emotions quarter by quarter, etc. Also when watching some of the highlights of that game, it's hard to say that Toronto played terrible defense against him (which they still did overall) because many of his shots were so well defended, they just couldn't do anything about it. I really enjoyed this feature even though I've seen the game and the highlights many times before.

Overall, this DVD is a must have for any Lakers fan or any fan of Kobe's. Some of the special features are hit and miss, but it's definitely worth $20 for the die-hard Lakers fan or Kobe fan such as myself."
We want tacos!
H. Bala | Carson - hey, we have an IKEA store! - CA USA | 07/21/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I'm sorry in advance for all the smug about to go down. It's been some weeks now, and I'm still basking in the moment. Big, huge, gynormous Lakers fan here, and I wanted to get my paws on this DVD so badly I ended up buying it off Wal-Mart, even though I'd already ordered the damn thing on Amazon. I've been following the L.A. Lakers since I caught their Finals series with Philadelphia back in 1983. L.A. would get friggin' swept, but I was hooked anyway. I was along for the ride during the Showtime era, the dog days with Nick the Quick and Sedale Threatt, the Shaq-Kobe years and the 3peat, and the fallout to that. Then the rebuilding, rebuilding, rebuilding...

After having gotten to the mountaintop last year and then getting shoved off the mountaintop, this season was either championship or bust. But this newest incarnation of the team, although highly regarded, certainly put its fans thru the wringer and provided its critics plenty of ammo. Most of the doubts stem from L.A. getting embarrassed by Boston in the 2008 Finals, and the stigma absolutely carried over into the next season. And, during the regular season, L.A. had trouble maintaining leads and allowed inferior teams to hang around. Then there were the setbacks in the playoffs. For all that they put us thru, and the soap opera nature of this team, and the fact that Kobe was this close to skedaddling... yeah, this Larry O'Brien trophy feels just a bit more special.

The feature presentation runs at 70 minutes and offers significant coverage, interviews and behind-the-scenes footage of the Lakers' 2008-09 season. The DVD hits on several signature moments during the regular season, from the statement games against Boston and Cleveland (and incidentally ruining those teams' respective winning streaks) to Bynum again going down (while playing Memphis, incredibly, the same team against which he got injured last year) and to Kobe's blistering 61 points at MSG. Then the DVD covers the high points of the Lakers' run in the playoffs, capping it all off with the hoisting of the Larry O'Brien trophy, the joyous locker room celebration, and, as the end credits roll, several clips of the Wednesday Lakers parade down Figueroa and the unbelievable pep rally at the Coliseum (I was there, brother! Got there at 4am , the morning of... don't tell my boss). If you want to see grown men hug each other to death and give each other champagne baths... and I can never get enough of Phil Jackson getting tricked into joining the huddle and getting soaked...

Glossed over, though, is coverage of DFish's message-sending shoulder shiv at Scola which resulted in a one game suspension, as well as Kobe and Ron Artest roughing each other up. And I wish Shannon Brown's posterizing of the Birdman had been included.

The "Can Kobe win a ring without Shaq?" debate has finally been put to rest. Now it's all about where Kobe Bryant, the so-called Mozart in Sneakers, ranks in the short list of the All-Time Greats. Right now I put him firmly in the top ten - okay, somewhere near the bottom of the top ten, granted, but with room to move up. Now Kobe had an excellent playoffs and totally deserved being named Finals MVP. But I do recall several missed free throws, costly turnovers, and poor shooting percentages against Orlando... Which all goes to show that this is very much a team game, and the Lakers couldn't have won jack - I don't care how clenched Kobe's teeth were - without his teammates, without Gasol's redonkulous talent, Ariza's defense, Odom's versatility, and DFish's grit, big heart, timely shots, and locker room leadership (I simply love the hell out of DFish!). Really, the only one who didn't produce was the Machine, who went scoreless in the Finals, but the important thing is that his hair remained fashionably cool and tousled.

No matter what happens from now on, that parade and pep rally was the last time the 2009 Championship Lakers would exist as a whole. It's not the same team now, the makeup is different. A big piece has moved on, and another may be on his way out. I can't help but think that Ariza got jipped a little by Lakers management (which jumped at the chance to land Artest). And who knows what's going on with Odom? I think that the Lakers next year are again going to be a monster team. But there's an arms race going on in the NBA, with Cleveland, Boston, and San Antonio getting better. The Lakers are again going to be in the mix, and I have high hopes. But, for now, I'm living in this moment. Basketball immortality for the Purple & Gold, once again.

The 2008-2009 NBA CHAMPIONS: LOS ANGELES LAKERS DVD not only has a classy feature presentation, but its Special Features are also pretty sweeeet:

- 2 slideshows, one with Kobe Bryant (4 minutes), the other with Pau Gasol (3:30 minutes), with commentary from both on several defining moments in their careers.

- All-Access looks at two regular season statement games: Boston Celtics at L.A. Lakers (12/25/08) & Cleveland Cavaliers at L.A. Lakers (1/19/09) - both segments 9 minutes long.

- The Lakers Roundtable (23 minutes): Jerry West, Mitch Kupchak, Magic Johnson, Kurt Rambis, James Worthy, AC Green, Byron Scott, Bob McAdoo, Jamaal Wilkes, and Asst. Coach Bill Bertka reflect on the 1980s Lakers Showtime era (but where's Cap?). This is insightful stuff, and very emotional, especially when Jerry West talks about Magic.

- Replays of the entire 4th Quarter of Game 7, Lakers vs. Houston & the entire 4th Quarter of Game 6, Lakers at Denver, and the presentation of the Western Conference Championship Trophy, to which the Lakers rightfully react with a pronounced lack of excitement. These are blowout wins, which I relished during their original broadcast, but now they've lost some of the impact. I actually would've preferred the entire 4th Quarters of Games 4 and 5 with the Magic or of Game 1 with Denver.

- Spotlights on Trevor Ariza (2:30 minutes), Derek Fisher (3 minutes), & Lamar Odom (3 minutes).

- A look back at Kobe's monumental 81 points scored against the "Olé" defense of the Toronto Raptors on 1.22.06 (23 minutes), with Kobe reflecting back to that evening, selected footage of that game, and comments by other NBA players.

30 Finals appearances in 60-something years of NBA Finals existence, and 15 championships. One of the most storied sports franchises ever. You can't blame the Los Angeles Lakers for wanting to only hang up championship banners. For now, what else is left, but to cue Randy Newman and for Chicky Baby to put the game in the refrigerator.

Oh, and the coaching staff might think twice before allowing young Bynum to lace it up against Memphis ever again. I'm just sayin'..."