Derrick Rose‘s new documentary, “Pooh: The Derrick Rose Story,” tells the story of his life…but it only tells you the parts that he wants you to know.
It doesn’t tell you the full story, in large part because Rose helped produce the film and his agent, BJ Armstrong, was an executive producer. Rose says several times in the film that he is “speaking his truth,” but his truth is only his truth. It’s not the truth of the woman whose story is almost completely absent from the film.
Yes, the film acknowledges that civil suit. But the acknowledgment is jarring. And it seems to come reluctantly.
One moment, Rose is crying about his trade to New York and the next moment, there are two brief sentences scrawled across the screen describing the bare minimum information regarding the case. Two brief sentences laying out the suit and the legality behind it.
There is no acknowledgment of the hell the woman went through. There is no apology from Rose for his wrongdoings in the handling of the case – no apology from Rose for making the woman feel uncomfortable and no apology from Rose for taking pictures with jury members after the case was resolved.
Instead, the film cuts immediately to Rose saying he has “never disrespected a woman.” Just like that, the moment is over.
Rose begins to talk about how publicity around the case affected him and he moves on. The film switches to the controversy surrounding his surprise absence from the Knicks shortly after the case ended.
Whether Rose is guilty or not, one thing that was abundantly clear while the case was being played out and one thing that has been abundantly clear since the woman involved went through something incredibly traumatic.
In less than two minutes of air time, the trauma that woman experienced is minimized and brushed over – without Rose even acknowledging that he was at fault for that trauma.
Even though he was found legally not liable, he was at the root of what she went through. And it’s wrong for him not to acknowledge that in a film that’s supposed to be about his life.
It would be wrong to not mention that this film, despite it’s one massive fault, does have good moments. It shows viewers the never-before-seen moment Rose found out he was being traded to New York and it’s full of heart-warming insight from the ever-lovable Joakim Noah.
But, please, when you are enjoying those moments, don’t forget that there is a dark cloud hanging over this film. Rose had the power and an outlet to acknowledge this woman’s pain and he chose not to.
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