The First Slam Dunk

I love basketball and pretty much will give any basketball movie a try, the first basketball movie, I ever saw was Blue Chips which is still one of my favorite sports movies of all time. Now, despite being a big basketball fan, I had never heard of the manga Slam Dunk or the animated series based on it in the 90s. That meant I watched The First Slam Dunk without any frame of reference for what it should be and I was able to just take it as is.

How to Download The First Slam Dunk

You can download or stream the film from a digital platform. Click on the Download button at the end of this review and check the availability. Read also our reviews of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba – To the Swordsmith Village or That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime the Movie: Scarlet Bond.

The Movie Review

Why am I saying this? For the most part, The First Slam Dunk has been very well received, but those who have issues with it seem to be people that know and love the original manga and animated series. For me, this was just a fun, lovely, and tragic coming-of-age movie centered around basketball and that is why I liked it so much. I was lucky in that my theatre was literally showing this for one weekend and I managed to catch it.

Our main character is a teenager called, Ryota. Ryota plays basketball for his high school team, but Ryota is struggling in dealing with the death of his older brother. Ryota and his brother bonded over basketball and his brother was a rising star, something Ryota wants to live up to, but the pressure is clearly there.

Ryota’s high school team is not exactly ranked as the best in Japan, but they have a good attitude, and team spirit (for the most part) and are willing to work hard and this puts them on the opposite end of the court from one the best teams! This is a very typical sports movie and you kind of see where it is going a mile away, but man is it a great ride to get there.

I will say that the way we learn more about Ryota and his teammates is well done, but I do think that some characters get kind of brushed over and we do not connect with them quite as much as a result. For me though, The First Slam Dunk was all about our main character Ryota and his desire to honor his brother through the game of basketball.

This is a solid sports movie and one that I did enjoy a great deal. The First Slam Dunk is brought to us by Toei and written and directed by the series creator, Takehiko Inoue. It is a fantastic-looking movie and the animation of the basketball scenes is incredible, one scene with Ryota playing with his brother has some of the best basketball animations I have ever seen, it looks like it was motion captured, it is that good!

Do you need to like basketball in order to enjoy this movie? I do think if you like basketball, the movie will be more appealing to you. However, it does stand on its own as a good coming-of-age sports drama. It may be predictable, but to be fair, most sports movies are so I will not hold that against this. I will 100 percent be picking up the Blu-Ray of this when it is released so that tells you it is a movie that is very easy for me to recommend!

The First Slam Dunk
The First Slam Dunk is an animated sports movie that is based on manga called Slam Dunk. Download it now and enjoy the action.
8.5 Total Score
The First Slam Dunk Review Summary

Sound & Music
  • This is one of the best basketball movies I have seen
  • The animation, especially during the basketball scenes is incredible
  • I legit cared about the main character and what he was going through
  • At its core, it is a good coming of age story
  • I do think if you do not like basketball, you may not get as invested
  • I wish we got to know some of the other characters a little better
User Rating: 5 (1 vote)
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Jason Delacey

Jason Delacey

Jason is a 40-year-old writer from Northern England. He has been playing video games his whole life and writing about them for over a decade. As well as enjoying gaming into the wee hours of the morning, Jason is a real film fanatic too! He is open to watching all genres of movies from animated singing animals to brutal horror!

Jason loves to give his honest opinion on games, movies, TV shows and is always willing to give anything a try!

Favorite Games: Resident Evil 4, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time, Bioshock Infinite, Super Mario World, The Last of Us, Halo 2, Streets of Rage 2, Overwatch.

Favorite Movies: Terminator 2, The Empire Strikes Back, Avengers Infinity War, Bloodsport, The Transformers The Movie. Dogma, BASEketball, From Dusk Till Dawn

Favorite TV Shows: X-Files, Supernatural, Lost, American Horror Story, The Mandalorian, Stranger Things.