Movie Mom

Movie Mom


The Perfect Game

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some thematic elements
Profanity:Some mild language
Nudity/Sex:None
Alcohol/Drugs:Character gets drunk in response to stress
Violence/Scariness:Sad offscreen death of a child, themes of grief and loss
Diversity Issues:A theme of the movie, some racist remarks and behavior
Movie Release Date:April 16, 2010

Think of it as the “Good News Bears.” This sweet, sometimes sugary film is based on a real-life Little League team from Monterrey, Mexico who came to the United States to play in the Little League World Series of 1957 and not only won every match but, well, you saw the title.

Jake T. Austin of “Wizards of Waverly Place” plays the baseball-mad Angel, who lives with his parents in a desperately poor community. He and his friends love to hear about pro games and players in America. They want to learn how to play but they do not even have a baseball, much less a playing field or a coach.

Angel finds a ball and then he finds a coach in Cesar Faz (Clifton Collins, Jr.), a factory worker who once worked with the St. Louis Cardinals. The boys make their own field. With the help of Coach Faz and inspiration from Padre Estaban (Cheech Marin, adding another to his list of screen roles as a priest), the boys become a team. When they get a chance to play in the Little League World Series, they each take only one change of underwear, carried in a brown paper bag. First, it’s all they have. But second, it never occurs to them that they will win, so they assume they will be home after the first game.

But they win. And they win again. A woman reporter (Emilie de Ravin, channeling all the girl reporter actresses of the 1930′s newspaper movies) reluctantly accepts the assignment, then is captivated by the courage and dedication of the team. As they rise through the ranks, they encounter racism, xenophobia, and just plain old hostility. But they hold on to their ideals — including refusing to play unless they can be led in prayer first (we find out why they are so partial to Psalm 108. They get help from some unexpected sources: a sympathetic diner owner (Frances Farmer), the reporter and a groundskeeper who once played in the Negro Leagues (a fine Louis Gossett, Jr.). And they keep winning.

It has a retro feel that has nothing to do with its 1957 setting, but like its pint-sized team (inches smaller and pounds lighter than its opponents), the movie has so much heart that it is easy to root for. Collins and Marin are engaging enough to give the predictable and light-weight script a little extra heft. If “The Perfect Game” is not the perfect movie, it is an enjoyable little fable that will be fun for Little Leaguers and their families.



Previous Posts

Believe Me
Will Bakke has followed his two thought-provoking documentaries on faith with a remarkably smart, funny, brave, and heartfelt first feature film that explores religion and values without ever falling

posted 11:06:16am Sep. 30, 2014 | read full post »

Gone Girl's Rosamund Pike
Rosamund Pike delivers a stunning breakthrough performance in this week's "Gone Girl." She's been a favorite of mine for a long time, for her elegant voice and precise acting choices. It's a good

posted 8:00:23am Sep. 30, 2014 | read full post »

Telling Time in "All That Jazz"
One of my favorite writers provides insights into one of my favorite (if flawed) movies -- Matt Zoller Seitz created a beautiful video essay about Bob Fosse's autobiographical "All That Jazz" for the Criterion Edition, and then they were unable to use it due to rights problems with the movie clips h

posted 3:19:48pm Sep. 29, 2014 | read full post »

Tomorrow on PBS: The Makers: Comedy
Be sure to tune in to PBS tomorrow night for what is sure to be one of the highlights from one of the all-time best series on PBS: "The Makers," the story of women in America.  Tomorrow's episode is about women in comedy. [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHxHMgSF7UI[/youtube]

posted 8:00:45am Sep. 29, 2014 | read full post »

Tomorrow on HBO: "The Fifty Year Argument" -- Scorsese on The New York Review of Books
Once upon a time, there was no internet. And instead of bloggers and pundits and tweets we had something called public intellectuals, people who read widely, thought deeply, and wrote long, passionate, carefully reasoned, thoroughly documented and beautifully written articles about the important is

posted 3:59:26pm Sep. 28, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.