New to DVD this week:
THE BUSINESS OF AMATEURS
A former student athlete questions the policies of the NCAA.
Former USC linebacker-turned-filmmaker DeMars enjoyed his time as a student athlete but contends with the health consequences to this day. Sharing his story along with those of several other former amateur collegiate athletes, he launches into a broad consideration of the imbalance of power between student athletes and the NCAA, theoretically charged with looking out for their best interests, but in many ways exploiting them or otherwise hampering their ability to make a sustainable living, receive an adequate education, plan for a future after collegiate athletics, and cope with health concerns resulting from their amateur careers. DeMars’ project is earnest and honest, seeking answers for how and why amateur athletes are treated, and searching for a more equitable system that would truly serve them better. Unfortunately, the film is marred by excessive narration that bogs down and cheapens the storytelling, as well as a tendency to cover far too much, too quickly, introducing interesting or provocative ideas before immediately jettisoning them for another topic.