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Film Review - "Challengers"

There is a reason why “Challengers” has become the darling of the independent film and theater community. I have never seen a film that shows the entire genesis of manipulation the way “Challengers” does—how to plan it, how to execute it, and the devastating effects of it. Best of all, the three protagonists each manipulate each other and maybe, in the end, themselves. It’s a primer on a human condition that we all wish we could control. Do not miss this film.

I read some of the reviews. Some controversy there. And I agree that the ending will take a little time to digest, but it’s worth the time. Go back afterward and review the first time they were all three together, and you will find the key to that mailbox. The tennis scenes are great. The only thing that might irritate you if you do play the game is Josh O’Connor’s serve. But it’s a small price to pay.

Zendaya. I thought she was a model. Walker of red carpets. Maybe a singer? Wasn’t sure. Her fifty films (yes, 50!) are not in my sweet spot, but the “Dune” series cannot be ignored. And the woman can act. I mean really act, and either they brilliantly used her stand-ins in a way no other tennis movie has accomplished, or she can also hit the tennis ball.

Oh, the games we play in life. Sometimes we are aware of them, and sometimes we haven’t a clue. To watch them unfold in a film that is also exciting and filled with twists and turns you didn’t see coming is not to be missed.


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