Monday, September 26, 2011


Directed by Bennett Miller, Michael De Luca Productions, 2011. Starring Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, Robin Wright, and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Genre: Biography, Drama, Sport

Question: Did you ever have an idea that is absolutely insane but you know deep in your soul it will work? Sure, nearly every one around you knocks you down especially when the idea doesn't take off right away. However, you stick to your guns and eventually there is some sort of payoff. In a nutshell - that is Moneyball - the latest Brad Pitt film.

Well, I saw Moneyball yesterday, but I will admit that I was unsure about seeing it until someone asked me about it. It is not my normal genre to see, a sports film, but I was pleasantly surprised at the moral of the story. I felt a deep connection to it somehow. Currently, I am delving into a dream of becoming a professional movie reviewer; however, my style of reviewing is not the norm. Success has not arrived...yet. Being a certain age or having some wisdom I realize struggle is part of dreaming and nothing is going to stop me from obtaining my goal.

So, if you have ever had a dream - even a crazy one - you should see Moneyball.

This isn't a typical baseball tale. The story is not about achieving absolute greatness either. That only happens in the movies, and with that, so often it skews our realities when we pursue our dreams. It was completely refreshing to see a story with a real outcome.  Of course, it is based on the true story of the 2002 Oakland A's and how the General Manager, Billy Beane (played by Brad Pitt), tried something completely radical to improve the team. Is this the full reality of what happened? I cannot answer that.

I can tell you I was unaware of how the business of baseball worked but got a crash course with this movie. Some baseball teams have deep pockets while others have mere pittance to put their team together. That detail was surprising to learn and the Oakland A's, apparently, had the bottom of the barrel type of budget. So, Billy Beane (Brad Pitt), found a young Yale graduate (Jonah Hill) who devised a mathematical scenario for a winning season. As I said it was a radical approach.  However, those two believed in this new theory, called Moneyball, but discovered roadblocks left and right.

Brad Pitt played the ex-baseball player turned general manager. This was not a typical character for him and I rather enjoyed the performance. Some are even buzzing about nominations. Now there were no elaborate pep-talks with an emotional melody playing in the background or even an overwhelming breakdown moment that the Academy usually looks for to nominate. He was just a man who loved baseball and his team and wanted to....wait! I can't tell you that. You have to see for yourself.

I won't say anymore about the story but know this is not a fast paced movie. I should also say it is not a typical underdog story either. There was some humor in Moneyball that I wasn't expecting especially between the two lead actors. In fact, I was grinning for almost the entire movie. But I will say towards the end I had some mixed emotions. You will just have to see for yourself to understand what I mean.

Moneyball is worth the price of the ticket. You might want to grab your kids (PG-13) to show them a tale of someone who pursues a dream despite the obstacles.

My favorite part: The scenes between Brad Pitt's and Jonah Hill's characters. Oh, and when the daughter sings in the guitar store.

My least favorite: Perhaps towards the end when my emotions kept going back and forth of liking then not liking then liking, what was happening.

Rating: PG-13
Length: 133 minutes

Rating: 8 out of 10

Click on film poster to watch instantly:

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