I talked a few weeks ago about how much I love Baseball, specifically the Red Sox. Well it stands to reason that if I love Baseball, I would like Baseball movies. So today I wanted to share my personal favorite Baseball movies.

 

Before I start to list I wanted to mention what had to be my favorite Baseball scene ever-from the movie The Naked Gun! Frank Drebin infiltrates a Baseball game looking for a potential assassin, and let’s just say that it’s really funny! Yeah the Acaedmy Award spoof in the third Naked Gun was better,but still. I dare you to watch the scene where he mangles the national anthem and not laugh!

 

Ok, here are my favorite Baseball movies.
#5.Major League
I go back and forth on this movie all the time. Sure, the Baseball stuff is fun but why did they have to ruin the movie with that awful love story? I like Rene Russo, but that subplot just seem really unneeded, as if they wanted to pad the running time. Still the Baseball stuff is really good and the film does have some laughs in it. Charlie Sheen, Tom Berenger, and Cornin Bernsen all make a solid cast. Even Bob Uecker is fun as the announcer. Sure the jokes a re bit off color but the character stuff works well. It’s Just a fun movie, if you can get past that annoying romantic nonsense. What about the sequels? Yeah….let’s just move on  J

#4. Fever Pitch
This little romantic comedy is a favorite of mine. I decided it would be silly to put this at #1, so I compromised and put it in the middle. I admit I have a bias for this movie since the focus is all about my favorite team. Yes I can see why it is not very popular,and I would have liked a little more baseball in it, but any movies which is set in Fenway Park and covers the 2004 World Series win is going to be a favorite of mine. Jimmy Fallon is passable and anything with Drew Barrymore is fine with me. The love story is cliché, but I still cared enough about the characters to want to see them work out and as a major baseball fan could even relate a bit to the situation. Though if my girlfriend told me she was taking me to Paris, I wouldn’t give a damn who the Red Sox were playing  :)
#3.Moneyball
This was a great movie but it’s possible you really have to be a Baseball fan to enjoy it. If you wanted to know how the mechanics work behind the scenes, this is the film for you. Of course Brad Pitt stars as Billy Beane who took a sabermetic approach to Baseball and turned the Oakland A’s aroundback in 2002. Of course we here in Boston appreciate Billy Beane’s approachbecause it was using his technique that got us our first World Series. But I digress;the movie is really interesting as the story is well told. They also told whatreally happened rather than turning it into a “Hollywood” ending. Theperformances are also solid including Jonah Hill and Philip Seymour Hoffman.
#2.A League of Their Own
This movie is just a surprise. It could have easily been a bore, I mean really easily, but instead it’s really entertaining. Penny Marshall directs an all star cast which includes Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, Rosie O’Donnell (before I grew to hate her), and Madonna. The performances all work and there are some real laughs here. Especially Tom Hanks, this is one of his funniest roles to me. It’s here the classic “There’s no crying in Baseball!”comes from. Even Jon Lovitz in a bit part manages to be really memorable and funny. There is also some very dramatic moments surrounding the war going on at the time and the film balances the two out real well.  And most importantly, the Baseball stuff is just exciting and fun to watch which is not always easy for these Baseball movies to accomplish.
#1.Field of Dreams
 
I love this movie, it may be the one Kevin Costner film I really like. And the fact there was a scene set in Fenway Park has nothing to do with it. This is a small story but done on a big level, and in fact you have to use your imagination to really buy it. “If you build it, he will come” is what the voice says and Kevin Costner tries to determine the meaning. The movieis sort of about the Black Sox scandal back in 1919 and handles all that well. James Earl Jones is great in this, giving one of my favorite movie speeches ever which I will share below. This is also Burt Lancaster’s final role and hereally shines here like he did in most of his films. What this movie is truly the story about a guy who never had the chance to make up with his father before he died, and gets the chance to in the end. Just a very strong story and I could watch it a hundred times.

 

“People will come Ray. The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game: it’s a part of our past, Ray. It reminds of us of all that once was good and it could be again. Oh… people will come Ray. People will most definitely come.”….James Earl Jones as Terrance Mann in Field of Dreams (I trimmed the top part of the speech but the whole thing is gold!)
 
A few honorable mentions before I conclude. Where is Bull Durham? I never saw it, though I heard it’s good and even has some Baseball in it. The Natural I did see, and all I really remember is the iconic last scene where Robert Redford smashes the lights with a line drive. The Bad News Bears and Damn Yankees…I don’t remember either. And what about the more child friendly films like Angels in the Outfield and Rookie of the Year? They were silly fun and that’s about it. I did like how the team loses in Rookie of theYear, nice change of pace. Finally I did enjoy Kevin Costner’s underrated For Love of the Game but decided not to include it here.
That’s it here, please share any comments below and let me know if I missed your favorite.

By richb

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