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Fast Break (1979)

PG | | Comedy, Sport | October 1983 (Japan)
David Greene is a New York basketball enthusiast, who wants to coach. He is then offered the coaching job at a small Nevada college. He brings along some players, who are a bit odd but good... See full summary »


Jack Smight


Sandor Stern (screenplay), Marc Kaplan (story)
1 win. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Gabe Kaplan ... David Greene (as Gabriel Kaplan)
Harold Sylvester ... D.C.
Michael Warren ... Tommy 'Preacher' White
Bernard King Bernard King ... Hustler
Reb Brown ... Bull
Mavis Washington Mavis Washington ... Swish
Bert Remsen ... Bo Winnegar
Randee Heller ... Jan
Connie Sawyer ... Mom
John Chappell John Chappell ... Alton Gutkas
Rhonda Bates Rhonda Bates ... Enid Gutkas
K Callan ... Ms. Tidwell
Marty Zagon Marty Zagon ... Henry
Richard Brestoff ... Howard
Doria Cook-Nelson Doria Cook-Nelson ... Snooty Girl (as Doria Cook)


David Greene is a New York basketball enthusiast, who wants to coach. He is then offered the coaching job at a small Nevada college. He brings along some players, who are a bit odd but good. Like Swish who unknown to the rest of the team is a girl. Preacher, who's being sought by some nefarious characters. And D.C., who's a fugitive. And along with some of the students at the college, he turns them into a contender. In order to give the team the respect they deserve and some exposure, Greene schemes to try and get the number 1 team led by Bo Winnegar, to play them. Written by <rcs0411@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Gabe Kaplan's having a ball! - His dream team's got a preacher, a jailbird, a pool shark, a muscleman. And the best guy on the team is a girl. See more »


Comedy | Sport








Release Date:

October 1983 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Canasta de sueños See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In his 2009 non-fiction tome "The Book of Basketball", Bill Simmons discusses NBA superstar Bernard King's performance in this film. Simmons added in a footnote that when he talked to Gabe Kaplan about the film, "Kaplan said they had 60 days of filming and Bernard gave them 58 good ones. He didn't elaborate." See more »


David Greene: All I'm asking you to do is give the boy another chance. Sports is his life. You know, the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.
Ms. Tidwell: I've never known the thrill of victory.
See more »

Alternate Versions

CBS edited 21 minutes from this film for its 1980 network television premiere. See more »


Referenced in Mike & Mike: Episode dated 5 March 2015 (2015) See more »


With You I'm Born Again
Music by David Shire
Lyrics by Carol Connors
Performed by Billy Preston & Syreeta
Produced by James Di Pasquale & David Shire
Courtesy of Motown Records
See more »

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User Reviews

My all-time favorite movie
10 November 1998 | by meeblySee all my reviews

I've seen nearly 1,200 movies, and this is my favorite. Not the BEST I've ever seen, but my favorite. Former Brooklyn junior high basketball coach-turned-delicatessen manager desperately wants to coach again. A small liberal-arts college in the Nevada desert wants him to build their team from nothing, for a salary of $60 for every game won. With the help of his playground-pickup-game teammate (New York Knick star Bernard King), he scours the streets for five great but undiscovered players. Then they go to Nevada, pick up a freshman quarterback in a school without football, and become an unbeaten sensation. Now the trick is to get nationally-ranked Nevada State (fictitious school filling in for UNLV) to play them in an exhibition game.

That's it; that's the plot. It sounds silly and contrived, like a T.V. sitcom meets an Horatio Alger story. So how come I loved it so much? How come in a list of favorites that includes The Godfather, All the President's Men, Sunset Boulevard and Rocky, this far lesser story of underdogs overcoming adversity is my greatest pleasure? Four things, I think: the characters are real, not cardboard cutouts, and they all have very real reasons for leaving New York for Nevada; Kaplan brings with him his "Welcome Back Kotter" sensibility for helping young people that everyone else has written off to achieve more than they ever thought possible; the film contains at least three hysterical AND original scenes, one of which would dubbed an all-time classic if 5 million more people had actually seen this film; and I'm not a sports fan, but the basketball games in this movie, especially the grand finale, are genuinely exciting. It's not ever going to make Halliwell's tome as a genre-defining classic. It may not even make your Saturday night video list. But it should.

Because it's real, it's fun, it's silly, and unlike more than half of what Hollywood feeds us today, it has a plot that keeps moving from the beginning to the end. And that's saying a lot.

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