Basketball movies based on true stories are 1. Glory Road (2006) 2. Uncle Drew (2018) 3. Blue Chips (1994) and 7 others.

Sports-related pictures can be a family film or inspiration for beginners. The right title can transport people to the sports world, inspire them to pursue a career in athletics and teach them important lessons.

Here we present some of the best sports films that are inspired by real-life events. These movies will leave a significant impact on sports lovers and families.

The list has all-time favorites such as He Got Game, the sports drama High Flying Bird, the documentary The Carter Effect, and the biography Iverson. These cinemas are a must-see for basketball fans.

Best Basketball Movies Of All Time

Movies NameStory Based On
1. Glory Road (2006)Coach Adolph Rupp in 1966 NCCA University Division Basketball Championship
2. Uncle Drew (2018)Kyrie Irving Idea
3. Blue Chips (1994)Tates Locke
4. Coach Carter (2005)Ken Carter
5. Celtic Pride (1996)Boston Celtics Fans
6. He Got Game (1998)A Father and School Athlete Played By Ray Allen
7. High Flying Bird (2019)NBA Rookies
8. Hoosiers (1986)Milan High School Indians
9. The Carter Effect (2017)Vince Carter
10. Iverson (2014)Allen Ezail Iverson

Basketball true story movies are inspired by the real-life events of former players. Mostly these are documentaries.

1. Glory Road (2006)

Glory Road became box office number one in weekend in United States in 2006
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 7.2/10
  • Genre: Biography Drama
  • Cast Members: Josh Lucas, Derek Luke, Austin Nichols, Jon Voight, Evan Jones, Alphonso McAuley
  • Duration: 1 hour 58 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Disney Plus, Prime Video, Redbox, Apple TV

Glory Road is about the real-life event of the 1996 NCAA University Division basketball championship. James Gartner is the director, while Chris Cleveland and Bettina Gilois wrote the narration.

The tale starts with coach Don Haskins who trains the high school girl basketball team around 1965. 

One day, he gets an invitation to teach the Texas Western Miners, who eventually compete in the 1966 national championship. Despite lacking financial resources, the mentor accepts the offer and moves to the college dormitory with his family.

Haskins recruits some skilled players to form a team that has the potential to compete for the championship. He puts his players through meticulous training. 

The university personnel was not happy that there were only five Caucasian athletes after the selection. The more the team wins tournaments, the more racial hatred rises. After the fight gets serious, American-African players stop playing with passion.

As the result, the Texas team ends with the second rank in the nationwide tournament of NCAA.

Glory Road premiered in January 2006 nationwide in United States theatres. It grossed over the filmmaking budget with the box office collection.

2. Uncle Drew (2018)

An eight-time NBA All-star Kyrie came with the idea of Uncle Drew
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 5.8/10
  • Genre: Comedy, Sport Drama
  • Cast Members: Kyrie Irving, Lil Rel Howery, Shaquille O'Neal, Chris Webber, Reggie Miller, Nate Robinson
  • Duration: 1 hour 43 minutes
  • Where To Watch: TNT, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, Google Play

Uncle Drew is an American sports comedy film co-produced by Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey. The Drumline director, Charles Stone III directed the picture.

Uncle Drew is the story of an old man who dreams of winning the Rucker Classic tournament in Harlem. Dax Winslow is the undervalued mentor of Harlem Money. Dax meets with the NBA All-Star, Kyrie Irving, to make his dream come true,

Irving portrays the streetball legend, Uncle Drew, in the picture. The mentor convinces him to return to the court one more time.

Dallas Mavericks' professional athlete admits it was his idea to make Uncle Drew. He got the inspiration from YouTube content of an old man, in a skate park.

3. Blue Chips (1994)

Nick Nolte portrayed the character of Pete Bell, the coach in Blue Chips
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 6.2/10
  • Genre: Sport Drama
  • Cast Members: Nick Nolte, Mary McDonnell, J.T. Walsh, Ed O'Neill, Alfre Woodard
  • Duration: 1 hour 48 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Prime Video, The Roku Channel, Paramount Plus, Vudu, Apple Tv, Redbox 

William Friedkin directed the 1994 sports drama film Blue Chips. Ron Shelton is the writer and producer.

The cinema is about a college sports mentor and how he is forced to break the rules to get his athlete in form. Pete Bell (Nick Nolte) is the coach of the Western University Dolphins in Los Angeles.

Bell is under pressure after his team starts losing more games. To make the best players, he breaks the rule he shouldn't have. His team then wins the tournament, but the trainer can't bear the guilt of cheating. He confesses what he has done and resigns from the position.

Blue Chips was released on February 18, 1994. Former coaches and sportspersons like Bob Knight, Rick Pitino, Bob Cousy, Allan Houston, and George Raveling have cameos in the cinema.

4. Coach Carter (2005)

Samuel L. Jackson plays the role of Coach Ken in the picture
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 7.3/10
  • Genre: Biography Drama
  • Cast Members: Samuel L. Jackson, Rick Gonzalez, Robert Ri'chard, Rob Brown, Nana Gbewonyo
  • Duration: 2 hours 16 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Prime Video, Apple Tv, Vudu, Redbox

Coach Carter is real life teen sports drama directed by Thomas Carter. The film is inspired by former high school basketball coach Ken Carter.

Samuel L. Jackson portrays the character of the mentor. Carter withdraws his entire team at Richmond High School for their poor academic grades.

Earlier he contacts college athletes to maintain their grade point of 2.3 average. Most of the parents and even the principal is not happy with his contract stating that students will be unable to meet his conditions.

Carter is advised to stick with his job only, yet, he doesn't listen to anyone. At first, the sportsmen continue to train and improve. They even win the Bay Hill holiday tournament. Later, the mentor finds out a few players have been violating their contracts, skipping classes, and getting poor grades.

So, what's his next step? The cinema is worth watching. Even at the box office, it doubled the budget of making. Coach Carter was released on January 14, 2005, in the theatres of the United States.

5. Celtic Pride (1996)

Celtic Pride is about the over-loyal fan boys of Boston Celtics
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 5.3/10
  • Genre: Sport Comedy
  • Cast Members: Damon Wayans, Daniel Stern, Dan Aykroyd, Gail O'Grady, Paul Guilfoyle
  • Duration: 1 hour 31 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Prime Video, Vudu, Redbox, Apple TV

Celtic Pride is an American sports comedy film released on April 19, 1996. Tom DeCarchio directed the picture with the cinematography of Oliver Wood.

Celtic Pride is about two boys passionate about the American professional basketball team, Boston Celtics. Two best friends, Mike O'Hara and Jimmy Flaherty, are over-loyal fans.

Mike is a physical education teacher, while Jimmy is a plumber. Their love for the sports team unites them for life. Every time, the team loses any match, they find themselves depressed and hopeless.

Out of their passion for Boston Celtics, they kidnap their opponent's star player to ensure their favorite team wins the championship. The narration of the cinema is timeless and can still resonate with sports lovers today.

The pictures show how serious a fan can get to make sure his favorite win any title. Boston Celtics has a match with Utah Jazz when the fanboys fake to be Utah fans to kidnap the opponent athlete.

6. He Got Game (1998)

Ray Allen, former professional player plays the role of son Jesus in the picture
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 6.9/10
  • Genre: Drama Sport
  • Cast Members: Denzel Washington, Milla Jovovich, Ray Allen, Rosario Dawson, Hill Harper
  • Duration: 2hour 16 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Spectrum TV, Prime Video, Apple Tv, Vudu

He Got Game is an American sports drama film that revolves around Ray Allen and his father. The cinema was released on May 1, 1998, in the United States.

The player's father played as Jake Shuttlesworth, is in jail for killing his wife, Martha, six years earlier. He is released on parole for a week to convince his son to play with Big State. 

The state's governor assures him to reduce his prison sentence if he can convince his boy. Jake meets his daughter after his release. On the other hand, the young school athlete refuses to meet his criminal father.

Throughout the cinema Jake tries to reassure his son to sign with the Big State. Jesus agrees in the end, but the governor refuses their deal and fabricates his work as an escape attempt.

7. High Flying Bird (2019)

High Flying Bird won seven nominations including BET Awards 2019
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 6.2/10
  • Genre: Drama Sport
  • Cast Members: Andre Holland, Melvin Gregg, Eddie Tavares, Farah Bala, Skip Bayless
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Netflix

High Flying Birds was premiered on January 27, 2019, at the Slamdance film festival and released on February 8, 2019, nationwide in the United States.

The sports drama is about a real-life event of how an agent shops a rookie around during the National Basketball Association lockout. The whole picture is shot on an iPhone 8.

Professional players like Reggie Jackson, Karl-Anthony Towns, and Donovan Mitchell have an appearance in the picture. Steven Soderbergh is the director, and Tarell Alvin McCraney is the writer.

8. Hoosiers (1986)

David Anspaugh is the director of Hoosiers 1986
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 7.4/10
  • Genre: Sport Drama
  • Cast Members: Gene Hackman, Barbara Hershey, Dennis Hopper, Sheb Wooley, Chelcie Ross
  • Duration: 1 hour 54 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Amazon Prime Video, Vudu, YouTube, Apple Tv, Google Play Movies, Redbox

Hoosiers is an American sports drama film co-produced by Carter DE Haven and Angelo Pizzo. David debuted as a feature film director with Hoosiers.

The picture is inspired by the real-event of a small-town team, Milan High School Indians, that made it to the state finals in 1954. High school principal Cletus Summers hires his old friend Norman Dale as a history teacher and head coach.

Dale, with a spotty past, meets with the townspeople who are sad about Jimmy, the best player in town, leaving the team. He left the team after the demise of his previous mentor.

Jimmy later rejoins the group. He is the one to score just before the buzzer sounds in the final state championship, securing their victory.

9. The Carter Effect (2017)

The Carter Effect Trailer ( Source : youtube )

  • Rating: 7.0/10
  • Genre: Sport Documentary
  • Cast Members: David Stern, Drake, Steve Nash, Richard Peddie, Tracy McGrady
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Where To Watch: Prime Video, Crackle, MUBI

The Carter Effect is a documentary film about an eight-time NBA All-Star from Daytona Beach, Vince Carter. Sean Menard directed the documentary covering the waves in Canadian Basketball when he was in Toronto Raptors.

The drama features another seven-time NBA All-Star, Tracy McGrady. Tracy shares his struggles when he was an 18-year-old rookie living in Toronto. The players recall the incident when they almost fail to make it to the 2000 NBA Salm Dunk Contest.

The Carter Effect was released on September 9, 2017 in Canada and the subsequent year in April in the United States.

10. Iverson (2014)

Iverson is the documentary about former athlete
Source : twitter

  • Rating: 7.1/10
  • Genre: Documentary Biography
  • Cast Members: Allen Iverson, Tom Brokaw, Larry Brown, Dwyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony
  • Duration: 1 hour 46 minutes
  • Where To Watch: Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, 

Iverson is a documentary about NBA legend Allen Iverson. Zatelle Beatty is the director of the biography released on April 27, 2014.

In the film, Allen shares his journey in his words. He recalls how he rose from a poor family in Hampton, Virginia to become an 11-time NBA All-Star.

Iverson demonstrates the highs and lows in the life of one of the distinctive former players, Allen.

High School Basketball Movies

Best basketball player movies for high school students to enjoy are 1. Love and Basketball 2. Like Mike 3. The Last Dance and many more.

Rise Official Trailer ( Source : youtube )

  • Space Jam: A New Legacy (2021)
  • Finding Forrester (2000)
  • The Air Up There (1994)
  • The Basketball Diaries (1995)
  • Rise (2022)
  • The 6th Man (1997)
  • Tony Parker: The Final Shot (2021)

Basketball Movies For Family

List of basketball movies that any sport-loving family can enjoy are 1. Hoop Dreams 2. Rebound: The Legend 3. The hustle and so on.

Double Teamed is inspired by story of Heather Marie and her twin sister Heidi Horton
Source : twitter

These films can be watched on Netflix, Hulu, Vudu, Youtube, Disney+, and others.

  • Quantum Hoops (2007)
  • Thunderstruck (2012)
  • Hoop Dreams (1994)
  • Semi-Pro (2008)
  • Fast Break (1979)
  • Double Teamed (2002)
  • Just Wright (2010)