Chalk | 2000
Gritty character studies, developed with improvisational actor imput, form the basis of this working-class drama set in a funky East Bay pool hall, the Crabtree, owned by the cantankerous--yet ailing--Pop Watson. Years ago, the black, 60-year-old, Watson, an ex-GI in Korea, was a pool hustler. Worn down by heroine abuse, he has left the playing to his sons, Jones and TC, Watson's Chinese-American son. TC is a pool-playing prodigy who holds court at the Crabtree while his "brother" Jones is a hustler. Both TC and Jones limit themselves to taking down local marks. Everyone knows TC doesn't have the nerve to take on real competition, even though his girlfriend is constantly encouraging him to broaden his horizons beyond the confines of this little smoky room, forgotten by time, and neglected by fortune. The status quo is threatened when Jones sets up a high-stakes match between TC and Dorian James, a ranked tournament player with a shady background in Asian gangs.