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.

Street Kings (8/10)

by Tony Medley

Running Time 107 Minutes

Tom Ludlow (Keanu Reeves) finds himself in a world of hurt, not unlike the one that faced Serpico. In an incredibly violent film, Tom is an LAPD detective whose partner, Detective Terrance Washington (Terry Crews) gets murdered and Tom’s the prime suspect. His boss, Captain Jack Wander (Forest Whitaker) does his best to try to protect him but Internal Affairs Captain James Biggs (Hugh Laurie) is out to get him. Tom hooks up with youthful Detective Paul Diskant (Chris Evans, who gives an appealing performance, reminiscent of his excellent work in 2004’s “Cellular”) to try to get the guys who did Washington.

This is a slam-bang, violent, profane, non-stop action police thriller. Directed by David Ayers from a story and original screenplay by James Ellroy (with credited changes by Kurt Wimmer and Jamie Moss), it is consistent with their apparent sensibilities of placing the LAPD in a poor light (Ellroy wrote “L.A. Confidential” and Ayers wrote and co-produced “Training Day,” both of which bashed the LAPD). It is greatly enhanced by the cinematography of Los Angeles by Gabriel Beristain. It’s made even more tense and exciting by the excellent editing of Jeffrey Ford and the music of Graeme Revell. All in all, the production values of the film are A+.

Among the excellent supporting actors is Naomie Harris (as Linda Washington, Terrance’s widow), who I thought should have received a Best Supporting Actress award for her role in “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.” In fact, for my money, she was the only good thing in that dismally long film. The biggest surprise is the competent performance of Cedric “The Entertainer” Kyles as Scribble, who has, heretofore, been seen mostly in films that strained to be rotten.

One thing I’ll say is that it takes a lot to kill people in this movie. In one scene a guy is raked with automatic weapon fire from two high powered guns for about ten seconds. He still doesn’t die until Tom can come over to him and press his chest, saying “stay with me.” Stay with me? The guy has at least 100 high-powered bullets that have ripped through him and Tom thinks he is going to stay with him? In real life the guy wouldn’t have survived five seconds, but this is Hollywood.

There are some other plot holes, but that’s to be expected. All in all this is a film in which you need not worry about falling asleep. Even if you don’t like the violence, the story and action are riveting.

April 10, 2008