'Space Jam' review: Nostalgia, iconic characters carry Lebron James' Tune Town

Jaylon Thompson
USA TODAY Sports Plus

Eh … What’s up, doc?

I say, I think it’s time for another trip to Tune Town to visit our zany collection of beloved friends. This time four-time NBA champion and Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James joined the ride 25 years in the making.

Much like the original iconic flick, "Space Jam: A New Legacy" mixed in elements for the entire family. From the start, viewers are immersed with an opening montage of James’ life. 

You know the story. James was just a kid from Akron who elevated from high school star to basketball royalty. Did you know he brought a championship to Cleveland? I guess it is true; anything is possible.

However, Space Jam 2 looks at a different side of the Lakers’ star. James steps into his role as a father to three children. The story centers on James’ fictional youngest son, Dom, and his hyper-focus on video games instead of hoop dreams. 

This leads to James ending up in conflict with a new character, Al G. Rhythm, who is played by noted actor Don Cheadle. Rhythm kidnaps Dom, and James goes into full-on dad mode to save his family.

Basketball star Lebron James teams up with Elmer Fudd, Tweety Bird and other Looney Tunes characters for an epic hoops game in the live-action/animated film "Space Jam: A New Legacy."

How will he do it? With a high-stakes basketball game full of hardwood razzle-dazzle.

In pursuit of his perfect team, James finds solace in a lonely Bugs Bunny. The famed character still patrols Tune Town, but misses his crew of friends.

As the team comes together, viewers are treated to different scenes from the vast Warner Brothers universe. There are some cool moments that will surprise you. One of my favorite scenes involved a “Keanu Reeves-style” Matrix cut scene. 

Yeah, Warner Brothers totally went there.

These throwback moments make the film and offer adults in the room a moment to revel in nostalgic memories. And oh the hilarity of watching Road Runner battle with Wile E. Coyote.

Daffy Duck is still in his bag as well. Sylvester and Tweety Bird continue to steal scenes. Also, can we talk about Speedy Gonzales? Iconic.

Where Space Jam 2 misses the mark is with the storyline. James does a good job with his fatherly role. The lessons he teaches his sons are applicable to everyday life.

Still, Space Jam 2 needed something a little more.

What made the original worthwhile was how well Michael Jordan intertwined with the famous Looney Tunes crew. We all love and remember MJ’s “Secret Stuff.” It is still one of the top scenes in pop culture today.

James held it down with one of his signature 30-point performances. NBA stars Anthony Davis, Damian Lillard and Klay Thompson also starred in key roles. Diana Taurasi and Nneka Ogwumike brought the hoops knowledge. 

I just wished the story connected the dots more and gone deeper. I was still left with questions regarding supporting characters and their arc in the film. 

Space Jam 2 is great for introducing a new generation to Looney Tunes.

The intermittent laughs were a nice touch, too. You will break out a few cheers along the way between James and the Looney crew. 

My main takeaway is that Space Jam 2 is exactly what you would hope a sequel to be. A homage to the original and a film to carry on its legacy.

I thought it was a solid viewing. I gave it a B+ on the trusty movie scale.

Come for the nostalgia and stay for the craziness that ensues. 

That’s all folks!