Out of print for more than 30 years, now available for the first time as an eBook, this is the controversial story of John Wooden's first 25 years and first 8 NCAA Championships as UCLA Head Basketball Coach. Notre Dame Coach Digger Phelps said, "I used this book as an inspiration for the biggest win of my career when we ended UCLA's all-time 88-game winning streak in 1974."

Compiled with more than 40 hours of interviews with Coach Wooden, learn about the man behind the coach. Click the Book to read the players telling their stories in their own words. This is the book that UCLA Athletic Director J.D. Morgan tried to ban.

Click the book to read the first chapter and for ordering information.


The Bourne Ultimatum (10/10)

by Tony Medley

The Bourne franchise was born, you should pardon the expression, in 2002 with The Bourne Identity. Although it brought in $213 million worldwide and is number 294 on the all-time gross list, I didnít like it, rating it only 3/10. It was pretty much lacking in suspense, was unrealistic, and had a laughably implausible car chase.

Despite the money it made, and the resurrection of star Matt Damonís career that resulted, Universal saw the light and replaced director Doug Liman with Paul Greengrass for the sequel, The Bourne Supremacy (2004). Results were instantaneous as this one climbed to 184 on the all-time list and brought in $288.5 million worldwide.

Universal hit a home run with Greengrass, who is, for my money, the best action director alive today. In fact, I would have given him the Oscarģ in 2004 for his work on ĎSupremacy. Greengrass returns for The Bourne Ultimatum. Like the other two, thereís really no story. Itís still Jason Bourne (Damon) trying to find out who he really is, on the run with the entire world after him. Since bad guy Brian Cox (Ward Abbott) got killed off in the last one, this time itís Noah Vosen (David Strathairn) whoís trying to kill off poor old Jason, much to the dismay of Pamela Landy (Joan Allen), who works for Noah.

Jason hooks up again with Nicky Parsons (Julia Styles), and I was glad about that because she is real easy to look at.

This starts out like itís a 9-second 100-yard dash and the pace just gets faster as it goes along, aided immeasurably by John Powellís upbeat, high-tension music. There is not one single second of slowness here.

But itís not all just music, Greegrass uses quick cuts, and out-of-focus and hand-held cameras to perfection and the editing by Christopher Rouse is Oscarģ-quality. This is a movie that is what it is because, in large part, of what was done in the editing room. The cinematography (Oliver Wood) of the romantic locales (like Tangier, Paris, London, and New York City) is gorgeous. I generally donít like CSI-type close-ups, but Greengrass and Wood use super close-ups here to great advantage.

This is just simply nonstop action and suspense. Unlike Liman, Greengrass knows how to film a car chase. Maybe the car chases are pretty implausible, but they are so spectacular, they kept me involved, reminiscent of Bullitt (1968) and The French Connection (1971), and thatís high praise, indeed. In fact, when I drove home I had trouble keeping my speed down below what it should have been.

The stunts are terrific, highlighted by a chase across the rooftops in Tangier, and a fight between Bourne and an assassin that takes a couple of minutes onscreen, but took two weeks to film. Youíll know it when you see it.

If you like films where the protagonist is on the run, but always seems a couple of steps ahead of his pursuers, lots of action, good-looking people, despicable bad guys, and  intensity that never lets up, you wonít do better than this.

August 1, 2007

top