Moneyball (2011)

moneyball poster 2011 movie
9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 9/10
Visuals: 9/10

Makes the story easy for non-baseball fans

Might turn off non-baseball fans before they see it

 
Movie Info

Movie Name: Moneyball

Studio: Scott Rudin Productions

Genre(s): Drama/Sports

Release Date(s): September 24, 2011

MPAA Rating: PG-13

moneyball-pitt-hill

We are screwed…lets try it anyway

The Oakland Athletics have a problem.  They can’t compete with the big money teams and just can’t buy the players that are leading the sport.  The General Manager Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) gets a new idea when he means a number cruncher named Peter Brand (Jonah Hill)…buy players who get on base, not the big names.  Now Beane is out to change the game of baseball and isn’t finding support from his employees or manager Art Howe (Phillip Seymour Hoffman).  Beane hopes to prove a point and perform a miracle or he could turn into the laughing stock of the league.

Directed by Bennett Miller, Moneyball adapts the non-fiction book by Michael Lewis Moneyball:  The Art of Winning an Unfair Game.  It follows the Oakland A’s 2002 season and was originally scheduled to be directed by Steven Soderbergh before it got tied up in productions and rewrites.  The film received Academy Awards nominations for Best Picture, Best Actor (Pitt), Supporting Actor (Hill), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Editing.

moneyball-team

Wish I had a few more scenes

Moneyball has a weird feel like The Social Network aka “The Facebook Movie”.  It is about events that are so recent, and people that are still around…It almost feels like a movie that is still evolving.  This newness of the movie gives it a bit of a hip feeling that other “historical” films can’t contain, but it also allows the viewers to know the story.

Even if you don’t follow baseball, Moneyball still works.  The story is pretty basic and if you know the general principles of how baseball works, it isn’t too hard to follow.  What you might not know about baseball, is explained in simple terms and made easy (probably over simplified).  The only part I kind of had a hard time following was the trade deadline day scene.  It was so fast and actually played a bit more on baseball knowledge.  It actually was meant to be lightning fast and show viewers how fast this trade “game” is played.

oscar-brad-pitt-moneyball

Oh yeah…I’m going for the win and Oscar

Pitt is good as Beane and plays him as someone who realizes he’s in a losing position.  He has nothing else left to try.  He’s cocky on the outside but it is because he has to be.  He’s a player who never was able to reach his goal and is getting a second chance as a general manager.  His dealings with players are interesting since he was a former player, his attempts to detach himself from players who are getting a second chance with the team obviously causes him struggles.

oscar-jonah-hill-moneyball

Wait, you expect me to act?

Hill is a bit more of a question.  I don’t like Jonah Hill.  He was ok (if not a bit obnoxious) in Superbad, but he’s always that guy.  Cyrus showed he has some acting ability and this also demonstrated that he possibly can get past his one-dimensional acting.  He’ll have a long road to get there and maybe he’ll make it.

Moneyball is a definite winner.  It is fun, smartly acted, and written.  It isn’t the flashiest of movies and it isn’t the best picture of 2011, but it is a solid contender for the nomination.  As someone who doesn’t follow baseball, I was still entertained and can recommend it for those who aren’t sports nuts.  As a non-sport nut it also is odd to see what seems like common knowledge idea presented by Hill…but I guess in that matter it helps those identify with the underdog A’s.

Related Links:

The 84th Academy Award Nominations

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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