I was so excited about finding this I had to share. The quality isn’t good, but considering it’s officially unavailable on DVD, it’s certainly better than nothing. I don’t think I’ve seen this in nearly 20 years, and it’s as wonderful as I remember.
Padres CEO and Team President Tom Garfinkel spoke with season ticket holders last Friday, less than 48 hours after the Zack Greinke/ Carlos Quentin incident that resulted in Greinke breaking his collarbone. Yahoo Sports obtained audio of Garfinkel’s talk. Garfinkel was of the belief that Greinke was throwing at Quentin intentionally, and explained-away it being a 2-1 game and a 3-2 count by comparing Zack Greinke to Raymond Babbitt.
“Zack Greinke is a different kind of guy. Anybody seen Rain Man? [crowd laughs] He is a very smart guy. He has Social Anxiety Disorder. He doesn’t interact well with his team, he doesn’t interact with his teammates.”
Garfinkle probably recognized that he had crossed some sort of line there. Later in the same talk, he added, ”This is my opinion, and I can’t say this publicly. Well, this is public, we are in the Trust Tree here.”
There is already talk of a sequel - “43: This Time Its Personal”
Despite the film’s sleek feel, the basic life story with its tribulations and triumphs remain intact. It’s inspiring, especially as depicted by Boseman who has the swagger of a young Denzel Washington. Serious, stoic, pent up. If anything he suppresses his anger better than Washington, letting it ride under the surface, so when it erupts, it’s dramatic, forceful. The physicality of his performance—mimicking Robinson’s awkward batting stance and freaky, base-stealing agility—is uncanny.
The romance between Jackie and his wife Rachel (Nicole Beharie; Shame and American Violet) depicts a strong foundation. Beharie flaunts the charm and determination that is trademark of the real Mrs. Robinson. Lucas Black as Brooklyn Dodgers shortstop Pee Wee Reese, is the quintessential character actor; the one you call when you need a Southern man with a solid persona. Tudyk as Chapman is suitable vicious and unremorseful as the “N” word rolls off his tongue with venom that would shame the KKK. Harrison, a lead actor, is not an obvious choice to play an historical character. His performance seems a bit studied, clunky and theatrical, but eventually he wins you over.
Hegeland’s script spends the right amount of time exploring Robinson’s inner self. He wasn’t just a skilled athlete; he was a keen strategist, a smart man’s player. He could get under the skin of any pitcher by stealing bases with the cunning of a fox. He was ferocious, yet a gentleman. The flaw in the script is that too often the characters talk in platitudes, and not like real people. Particularly Rickey; probably he was as smart businessman with certain ideals and solid morals. It’s unlikely that every sentence he uttered was prosaic, poignant and prophetic: “Dollars aren’t black and white, they’re green.”
Of course, if you’re a former major-leaguer who played for eight different teams from 1969-85, and have a memorable baseball card featuring a monster afro, then every night is Oscar night:
San Diego Padres — The Kid From Left Field (1979): If you think we went ahead with this post just so we could post pictures of Gary Coleman wearing the old mustard and brown McDonalds uniforms, you’re 100 percent correct.
So he wasn’t exactly a safe bet to star in a major studio film about one of the most important figures in the history of American sports. But as the St. Louis Cardinals celebrated their playoff win on the field, he suddenly felt their euphoria. “I’m about to play Jackie Robinson,” he told a friend at the bar. The pal gave him an incredulous look, and Boseman filled him in on the audition and his sudden certitude. A few other friends joined the conversation, and they all decided to toast Boseman for his role: one that he didn’t have yet and probably would never get.
Ralph Winter and Terry Botwick’s 1019 Entertainment are heading to ancient Rome and teaming with former Major League Baseball player Mike Piazza to produce “Constantine.”
David Franzoni, a producer and screenwriter on “Gladiator,” has written the screenplay, which centers around the complicated power struggle between rival claimants to the empire after the death of Galerius in 311 A.D. Under his reign, Rome’s capital was moved to the newly named Constantinople as he attempted to unite his empire through the spread of Christian doctrine.
...Producers credited Piazza’s involvement with getting the screenplay written.
“I’ve always been interested in this history of the Roman Empire, and this peaked when I visited Rome,” Piazza said. “The spread of Christianity during Constantine’s reign struck me as a huge turning point in human history and I think film is the best medium to capture such a significant moment.”
Ever hear the story about the classic movie “The Pride of the Yankees” and how director Sam Wood turned the hopelessly right-handed actor Gary Cooper into a believable version of lefty baseball legend Lou Gehrig? Here’s how Jeffrey Meyers related it in his biography of the Hollywood star, Gary Cooper: American Hero:
Since Cooper couldn’t hit left-handed, the technicians devised an ingenious method of getting around the problem. They reversed the number on his uniform, had him run to third instead of first base and then reversed the print of the film.
...So, did it really happen? We’ll see.
You should probably read the article for the answer, because a lot of work went into it and it’s interesting. But if you’re lazy and willing to admit it, mouse over:
as far as the final cut of “The Pride of the Yankees” goes, Gary Cooper never wore a backwards Yankees uniform of any sort. He never batted right-handed or ran to third base after swinging. He did indeed learn to bat left-handed. And only in a handful of shots during a brief sequence portraying Gehrig’s days at Hartford did the movie-makers resort to flipping footage in order to make Cooper appear to be a natural left-hander.
Maybe the movie didn’t have enough of the invisible President bit?
In so, so, so many ways TWTC does a much greater disservice to scouts that it does to the stat people. Heck, it merely makes stats-people into unrecognizably cartoonish figures who hate baseball but want to work in it so they can take over the world with their baffling “batting average” statistics. Big deal.
But scouts … this movie was supposed to celebrate them. Instead it makes grumpy and unfunny old men* who have some sort of weird super-power ability to hear drifting hands. This is exactly the stale depiction of scouts that Moneyball did such a good job of lampooning in the first place….
But here’s the point: If you want to celebrate a scout, why wouldn’t you have him NOTICE all these things. This gets at the very heart of what scouts do. They watch the games. They talk to the players. They learn all about the families. They listen to the fans. If you are doing a whole movie about what scouts can tell you that computer can’t—this is very crux of the argument. One of my favorite scout stories involves a scout in Venezuela who saw a kid play. He was too small, he was too slow, he couldn’t hit a lick. But the scout loved him, loved him because he had these beautiful soft hand, the ball just stuck to his glove, velcro, and he had this marvelous arm and this wonderful attitude. The scout kept following around the kid—there was something about him.
He called the GM personally to plead the case. He said he only needed $5,000 to sign the kid. $5K. It was nothing. The GM said no. Kid can’t run. Kid can’t hit. Who cares about soft hands? The scout said, “Fine, I’ll put up the 5K myself and prove you wrong.” The GM was impressed with that and he liked the scout a lot and he said, “OK, fine, you can have 5K.”
The player turned out to be Andres Blanco—not a star, certainly, not even an everyday player. But the guy got 654 plate appearances in the big leagues, made some dazzling defensive plays and was one hell of a deal for $5,000.