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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Teriffic Baseball Movie
Being a die-hard Chicago Cubs fan, I was immediately drawn to this movie. Us true fans could only hope for a real-life Henry Rowengartner to salvage our continuing seasons of near misses and shattered dreams.

In the movie itself, Thomas Ian Nicholas stars as Henry Rowengartner, a young 12-year-old boy who does many of the things normal 12-year-olds do: Playing...
Published on August 6, 2006 by Jeffrey T. Munson

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars scratched
This dvd was scratched and does not work. Son was so upset he could not watch the movie. Luckily Target had one in stock and we bought it.
Published 6 months ago by gohogs


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Teriffic Baseball Movie, August 6, 2006
This review is from: Rookie of Year [VHS] (VHS Tape)
Being a die-hard Chicago Cubs fan, I was immediately drawn to this movie. Us true fans could only hope for a real-life Henry Rowengartner to salvage our continuing seasons of near misses and shattered dreams.

In the movie itself, Thomas Ian Nicholas stars as Henry Rowengartner, a young 12-year-old boy who does many of the things normal 12-year-olds do: Playing little league baseball, building boats, and dreaming of pretty girls. Unfortunately for Henry, his baseball career isn't going so well. A fly ball hits him in the head, and then he throws the ball over the right field fence. To make matters worse, the next day, he trips over an unseen baseball while trying to make a catch and damages his arm. But unknown to Henry, his life is about to change forever.

Henry's mom (Amy Morton) and her scheming boyfriend Jack (Bruce Altman) take Henry to the emergency room and he is put in a cast, but when the cast comes off, Henry discovers that he can throw a baseball 100 miles per hour. He throws a home run ball all the way from center field to home plate on the fly. Jack, seeing a chance to cash in on Henry's golden arm, calls Sal Martinella (Albert Hall), the manager of the Chicago Cubs. Soon, Henry has a tryout with the Cubs, is signed to a contract, and begins playing for his hometown team. Also on the Cubs is Chet "Rocket" Steadman (Gary Busey) an aging star who has lost most of the zip on his fastball. Chet is given the job of mentoring Henry while he develops.

After a while, Henry develops into a pretty good pitcher, blowing his fastball by most opposing hitters. Due to the arrival of Henry, the Cubs fortunes begin to change and they soon find themselves in position to win their division. However, Jack continues his scheming ways, and he tries to orchestrate a trade to New York. However, the deal is nixed by the owner of the Cubs.

After a somewhat rocky start, Henry and Chet have become true friends, and Chet has taught Henry a lot about pitching and the game in general. Henry seems to think that Chet would be someone good for his mother, too. The season continues along, and the Cubs find themselves in need of one more win to win their division. Chet, having been told that he will be released next season, begins the game for the Cubs and pitches well early on, but he develops shoulder problems later in the game. Henry is brought in to take over for Chet and is his usual unhittable self, but late in the game, he once again falls over the baseball, this time reversing the power in his arm. He can no longer throw 100 mph. What will Henry and the Cubs do? Will they win the game and go to the world series, or will they do what most Cubs teams do: choke?

I'm a huge fan of baseball movies, and I'm also a big-time Cubs fan, so this movie was even more fun for me to watch. The acting is very good. Gary Busey does a great job as Chet, and the late John Candy is very funny as the Cubs announcer. I can relate so much to this movie as a Cubs fan; seeing them come so close and then ultimately choking in the end (a la 2003). It was fun to finally see them win for a change.

I give this movie my highest recommendation. Baseball fans will surely enjoy it, especially Cubs fans. Now if we could only get Mark Prior to pitch like Henry Rowengartner...
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thomas Ian-Nicholas shines in great classic, March 20, 2000
By A Customer
Rising heart-throb,Thomas Ian Nicholas,who s breaking-out in older roles,such as "American pie",and tv's "Party of five",shines in this comedy for all ages,about a boy who breaks his arm,and suddenly finds his "pitching" arm is almost super-human,and is placed in the big leagues! Not only offering younger audiences a good moral story,but terrificly funny,and will appeal to all ages! Great supporting cast! And offers a glimpse of Thomas' great acting skills,even at this young age. A family CLASSIC COMEDY!
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38 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DVD of The YEAR! M. W. Guess is STUPENDOUS!!, January 29, 2002
By 
Mini Figg (Hollywood, CA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Rookie of the Year (DVD)
Not only is this one of the best baseball films around, BUT it is notable for launching the cinematic career of that celebrated ladies man GuessWho! He appears at the approximately 00:44:58 mark, and those three seconds are what we in Hollywood like to call "Cine-MAGIC". Wow. Sadly, he is no longer sporting his coke bottle glasses, and his tradmark mullet is obscured from view, but even so, he is Grr! Baby! VERY GRR.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For all baseball fans, January 9, 2007
This review is from: Rookie of the Year (DVD)
For any kid who has wanted to be in the big leagues, this is their movie. By accident, Henry ends up with an amazing arm, and the Chicago Cubs want him to play for them. He does, and helps lead them to success. It's really movie for the whole family to watch together. (The only thing that I didn't like was the use of "Oh my God" during the movie a fair number of times.)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ROOKIE OF THE YEAR gives you the cheese, the high stinking Limburger, July 12, 2009
By 
H. Bala "Me Too Can Read" (Recently moved back to Carson, California, or as I call it... the center of the universe) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Rookie of the Year (DVD)
Today the AMC channel featured a back-to-back showing of ROOKIE OF THE YEAR and The Rookie (Widescreen Edition), and, for me, that was pretty much Sunday spent. These two films, redolent of that feel-good underdog vibe and of wish fulfillment, are essentially baseball fables, and young Thomas Ian Nicholas and Dennis Quaid, in their own respective ways, right away gets you rooting for them. THE ROOKIE, a true story, tells of a past-his-prime pitcher who gets a second shot at the big time. ROOKIE OF THE YEAR, not at all a true story, is about a 12-year-old boy who ends up pitching in the Major Leagues. And, ah man, it's a fun family flick.

Thomas Ian Nicholas plays Henry Rowengartner, a hopelessly klutzy 12-year-old Chicagoan and possibly the next-to-last worst player in Little League (after some poor kid with asthma). But an arm injury results in a freakish heal, as tendons in Henry's arm become fused to his humerus, the side result of which is that Henry now has serious torque in his arm and can suddenly pitch at devastating velocities. One day, at a Cubs game, when a homerun-smashed baseball sails into the stands, Henry, with his new super-arm, throws it back, a frozen rope hurtling from the bleachers and straight into the catcher's mitt. It's not too long before the Chicago Cubs, a team which hasn't been to the mountaintop since 1908 and hampered with poor attendance, reaches out to recruit young Henry as a publicity stunt. Which is how 12-year-old Henry Rowengartner (or, as the Cubbies manager calls him, Gardenhoser) becomes a star pitching reliever for the Cubbies, and an overnight sensation.

What I like is that there is a sort of unpredictability in this one gimmick movie. Henry eventually does begin to regularly mow down opposing batters, but not before a stint of struggle. Kid's not invincible. In his debut outing as the closer, he allows a home run, hits a batter, and throw a wild pitch... although he still gets the save. But it's obvious that Henry is lost at sea in the big leagues. Which is where Gary Busey comes in. It's a staple of this type of sports flick that a grizzled pro shows up to mentor the newbie. Busey tones down the crazy and, much like Tony Danza in Angels in the Outfield, lends a world-weary dignity to his role of surly, struggling pitcher Chet Steadman a.k.a. the Rocket. Steadman is trying to hang on in the twilight years of his baseball career, and is it any wonder that he resents this wunderkind with the thunderbolt arm? But thanks to Steadman's cryptic pep talk, Henry saves his second game in a row. Or to quote John Candy's game announcer, doing his best Bob Eucker impersonation: "That extends the Cubs to their longest winning streak of the season, two." I guess Harry Carey was busy at the time.

Under Daniel Stern's direction, the tone of the movie ranges from grounded to sentimental to screwball bizarre, this last trait brought about by Stern's oddball pitching coach character. I don't know why I laughed so hard at Daniel Stern getting stuck and squeezed in between two doors, but I did, so there it is. In spite of Stern's sometimes jarring eccentric turn, enough of what's appealing floats to the top to make this an enjoyable watch. ROOKIE OF THE YEAR smartly focuses on the story's whimsical elements and makes room for Thomas Ian Nicholas to do his thing. At the heart of the film is Nicholas's irrepressibly goofy grin and cheerful, easy going nature, and, young dude that he is, he embodies that which every other kid and kid at heart daydream about, the longshot making it in the big time.

Nicholas gets good support from the other actors. Gary Busey's grounded performance balances Stern's weirdness. Amy Morton is kinda terrific as Henry's cool and supportive single parent mom. Oldtimer Eddie Bracken as the Cubs owner instantly dredges up warm recollections of those classic films by Preston Sturges, although, not to get it twisted, ROOKIE OF THE YEAR is a long ways from Sturges's cinematic brand of awesome. ROOKIE OF THE YEAR isn't a classic, but it's certainly diverting.

Not that this movie doesn't have its share of trite. There's Henry's mom's clichéd jerky boyfriend whose first appearance immediately screams "This is the bad guy!" It's pretty predictable that Henry's boyhood pals feel left out, what with Henry engrossed in professional baseball and limo-riding and shooting ads for Pepsi. There's a groan-inducing moment when a batter gets what he thinks is an easy pitch and so licks his lips so broadly it's like he's a cartoon character. Of course, there's the big game at the end, of which outcome rests on Henry's suddenly mojo-less arm. It's a nice twist, Henry unable to rely on throwing strikes and instead forced to come up with rather unconventional ways to earn his three outs. Ergo, the Hidden Ball ploy and the "I dare you to run" gambit. Brother, it's so childish, but I couldn't help smiling, glad that the film keeps in mind that the central character is this kid, joyous and ever stupefied whenever he steps on hallowed Wrigley Field. Henry's foray around the bases had me in stitches. I guess you can get away with taunting the first baseman and then dissing the opposing pitcher with "We want a pitcher, not an underwear snitcher." - if you're a kid.

I hope it's not the kiss of death when I say that ROOKIE OF THE YEAR is a really cute film, but what other adjective is there when the kid gets fined $500 for being late in practice and his reaction is "Five hundred dollars! That's like six years' allowance!" ROOKIE OF THE YEAR doesn't quite approach the quality of its cinematic predecessors (It Happens Every Spring, Angels in the Outfield, The Natural (Director's Cut), etc.), and it's sometimes very broad and silly. But it keeps you tuned in on the strength of its warmth and exuberance and its outrageous premise. And where else can you see a 12-year-old strike out Barry Bonds?
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This movie is actually pretty good., December 16, 2002
This review is from: Rookie of the Year (DVD)
Rookie of the Year is actually a pretty good movie and even though it might seem like one og those stupid Disney non-cartoon movies it is a pretty funny movie.
This movie is about a boy (Thomas Ian Nicholas) who loves to play baseball but is horrible until he brakes his arm and is able to snap is arm forward so he can throw a baseball 100MPH and then get's an offer to play for his favorite team, the last place Cubs and he becomes a big help to the team.There is also love in this movie but it is mostly a kids and grown-up comedy.I'd say if you like baseball see Rookie of the Year or if you like comedys see Rookie of the year.I'm shoor you'll like this movie.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ROOKIE OF THE YEAR, April 4, 2001
By 
Rebecca (Massachusetts, USA) - See all my reviews
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR is definitely one of the best movies about Baseball of the '90s. ROOKIE OF THE YEAR is about a 12-year-old boy named Henry Rowengartener (Thomas Ian Nicholas) who ends up playing for the Chicago Cubs - being the youngest person ever to play in Major League Baseball - because he tripped on a Baseball and broke his arm and can now pitch a ball faster than 100 miles per hour. The Chicago Cubs is one of the lousist teams in the majors and the owner of the Chicago Cubs was looking for somebody who could really play Baseball. This movie also comes with a great, positive message: No matter how young you are, nothing is impossible. It's a great movie for both kids and adults and it's very funny, too. I highly recommend this movie to all Baseball fans. Even if you're not a Baseball fan you should still see this movie. The acting is very great, too. And Thomas Ian Nicholas is so cute. Buy it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Coming-Of-Age Baseball Fantasy. Excellent For Family Viewing. Performances Are Top-Notch. Score Is Rousing., May 28, 2007
This adorable baseball fantasy is a home run with families. Thomas Ian Nichols (before he went on to racy roles, a la the "American Pie" movies) is a treat to watch as [...] Henry Rowengartner, an average kid who becomes a phenom pitcher for the Chicago Cubs after a freak accident. Gary Busey ("Lethal Weapon," "Under Siege") does a fine job as the washed-up pitcher who takes Henry under his wing. Daniel Stern (who also directed) is a riot. Rated PG for some thematic elements and brief language.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ace Pitcher, June 29, 2014
This review is from: Rookie of the Year (DVD)
When most college guys try out for the varsity baseball team they are told to throw a baseball down the length of a football field at 100 miles per hour. It sounds impossible, but I suppose not.
And this is one of those movies. Rookie of the Year (1993) is an exciting miracle baseball movie. When 12-year old Henry Rowengarter learns that he can throw a baseball 100 mph he is shock. Most interesting is that the Chicago Cubs sign him up and he becomes their ace pitcher. Wow! It's never too late to fulfill your dreams to become a professional league baseball player.
Being a diehard Cub fan myself, I'm glad to see something good for the Cubs come out of this adventurous, exciting movie and I give it five stars. Marvin P. Ferguson, author of BOYS ON THE GOLD COAST.
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5.0 out of 5 stars strong memories, July 20, 2010
By 
This review is from: Rookie of the Year (DVD)
Rookie of the Year was, believe it or not, the VERY first film I have ever watched in a movie theater. I have a lot of memories of that first time experience, so that alone makes Rookie of the Year a memorable one in my eyes.

All the people around me laughing whenever a funny segment appeared on this HUGE movie screen positioned directly in front of me with this really loud sound system... and let's not forget how memorable the experience was because of how DARK everything inside the room was- it was a really cool experience, that first time in a movie theater.

I will admit however, that I was so fascinated and caught up in the whole movie theater experience that I never really paid attention to the movie itself. Now -17 years later- I'm watching the movie for REAL on my bedroom television (with no popcorn-throwing distractions getting in my way, haha).

The amount of laughs and the storytelling (*especially* the storytelling) really holds up amazingly well these days. What I feared would be a severely dated and predictably written comedy/family movie was actually just the opposite- this is *exactly* how a family movie should be created. It's funny, and you don't even have to be a baseball fan in order to fully appreciate it (or a Cubs fan for that matter).

In fact, over the last few years I've really gotten into baseball and must have watched over 100 Cubs games, so I have a better feel and understanding for the city of Chicago and especially Wrigley Field, therefore allowing me to appreciate Rookie of the Year even MORE. Absolutely terrific movie.

You know what the storyline is about so I don't need to mention that. You just need to know that the amount of hilarious segments are really high and as a result the movie is definitely worth watching. John Candy (who I completely forgot was even IN the movie) really shines as a Cubs announcer and makes me laugh really hard. The other actors (most of whom you will recognize) really shine in their performances as well. Just a really funny family movie.
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Rookie of the Year
Rookie of the Year by Daniel Stern (DVD - 2002)
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