Hustle parents guide

Hustle Parent Guide

Adam Sandler is far more bearable when he's not appearing in an "Adam Sandler movie".

Overall B-

Netflix: Adam Sandler stars as a basketball scout who finds a potential superstar in Europe and decides the athlete is his ticket back to scouting for the NBA.

Release date June 8, 2022

Violence B
Sexual Content C+
Profanity D
Substance Use B

Why is Hustle rated R? The MPAA rated Hustle R for language

Run Time: 117 minutes

Parent Movie Review

NBA talent scout Stanley Sugerman (Adam Sandler) has been grinding out a grueling travel schedule to find international talent for the Philadelphia 76ers. He loves the sport, and team owner Rex (Robert Duvall) has promised him opportunities to make assistant coach if he keeps bringing in good prospects. When Rex dies unexpectedly, though, Stan’s career opportunities dry up, and Rex’s son Vince (Ben Foster) makes no secret of the fact that he wants Stan gone. Desperate to stay in the league he loves, Stan starts hunting for young players, and when he sees all seven feet of unknown Spanish construction worker Bo Cruz (Juancho Hernangomez) tearing it up in a street game, he sees a ticket back. But Bo has never played on a professional team, and it’s going to take a lot of work to get him ready for serious NBA consideration – luckily for Bo, Stan has always wanted to coach.

I may not be the biggest basketball fan (or, in all honesty, even passingly interested in basketball), but it doesn’t take an expert to see that this film is a love letter to the sport. Adam Sandler is famously a fixture courtside at Lakers games, and it seems like half of the NBA shows up on screen, either playing themselves or other fictionalized pros. The real surprise is that some of these players aren’t half bad at acting – Hernangomez and Anthony Edwards are both surprisingly adept on camera. The other surprise is Sandler, who can manage to be both charming and funny, provided he’s in a movie he didn’t write. Like a lot of comics, Adam Sandler needs someone to tell him when to rein it in, and as long as he can stay on the rails, he isn’t insufferable.

On the other hand, this is one of the most paint-by-numbers sports movies I’ve ever seen. You’ve got your down-on-his-luck former player turned mentor, the naturally talented but untested new player, the antagonistic opponent, all of it. You’ve even got a series of jogging scenes as part of the inevitable training montage which might as well have had the theme music from Rocky playing under them. That said, the movie embraces its cliches and does them well, if unsubtly.

The biggest issue for parents is going to be the profanity, which is pretty heavy for a sports film that would otherwise be just fine for teens. To compensate, however, the film steers away from serious sexual content, violence, and substance use, so if you can handle a few dozen serious swears, and have a serious love for basketball, then this might just be the afternoon amusement for you.

Directed by Jeremiah Zagar. Starring Adam Sandler, Queen Latifah, Juacho Hernangome, Ben Foster, Robert Duvall. Running time: 117 minutes. Theatrical release June 8, 2022. Updated

Watch the trailer for Hustle

Rating & Content Info

Why is Hustle rated R? Hustle is rated R by the MPAA for language

Violence: People are pushed and shoved. There are references to assault.
Sexual Content: There are several references to pornography and some sexually explicit insults. One scene briefly suggests female toplessness.
Profanity: There are 28 uses of sexual expletives, 30 scatological terms, and frequent use of terms of deity and mild curses.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adult characters are briefly seen drinking socially. There is a comic reference to smoking marijuana.

Page last updated

Hustle Parents' Guide

Why does Stanley want to coach so badly? How does his difficult past effect his choices and dreams? How does Bo fit into that picture? How does Stanley’s experience help Bo overcome his own problems? What do Stanley’s dreams mean for his wife and daughter?

Home Video

Related home video titles:

Other basketball films include She Ball, Hoosiers, The Way Back, Rebound, Glory Road, and Coach Carter.