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SXSW Movie Review: Tennis comedy 'Break Point' serves up winning formula

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Break Point


Jeremy Sisto serves up an ace in his performance as over-the-hill tennis pro, Jimmy, a 35-year-old man child, who reunites with his estranged younger brother to form a doubles team and make one last run at qualifying for a grand slam tournament in the heart-warming tennis comedy "Break Point" which premiered last night at SXSW in the SXsports section.

Director Jay Karas, who has numerous TV show credits ranging from "Workaholics" to "Parks & Recreation" and "Raising Hope," delivers a winning formula in his feature film debut, balancing comical brotherly bonding moments off the court with credible tennis action on the court.

However, its youngster Joshua Rush who gives "Break Point" much of its heart with a genuinely endearing performance as a colorfully dressed (think Steve Urkel in the 1990s sitcom "Family Matters") nerdy student of Jimmy's brother (David Walton), a substitute teacher on break for the summer.

Sisto co-wrote the script for "Break Point" with long-time friend Gene Hong, who successfully merges elements from coming-of-age dramedies and raunchy sports comedies into a cohesive low-budget indie feel-good movie.

The film's ensemble cast also includes solid contributions from veteran actor J.K. Simmons, as the quarreling brothers' father, who works as a veterinarian, with Amy Smart as his assistant, who also happens to be the requisite love interest for Walton's character.

Cinematographer Jim Frohna and Editor Brad E. Wilhite also deserve credit for providing "Break Point" with its upbeat look, feel and brisk pacing.

"Break Point" premiered on March 8 at SXSW in Austin, Texas.

There will be encore screenings on March 12 at Alamo Village and March 13 at the Stateside Theatre.

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