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Al Percolo is a New York Yankees scout who is experiencing the worst luck of his life. When his boss sends him to Mexico on a grudge trip, Al discovers "the greatest ballplayer that ever lived": Steve Nebraska. Al manages to land a deal with Steve, but is fired while telling his boss about his great find. When the pair returns to the United States, Steve is promptly snapped up with a $55 million bid from the Yankees. Despite all his success, Steve's world is anything but the fairytale it appears to be. Steve has dangerous idiosyncrasies and an abusive past, which are uncovered as time goes on.
Brendan Fraser plays the part of the slightly eccentric, slightly insecure Steve Nebraska with astounding depth. Albert Brooks is perfect as the cheeky, unyielding scout.
However, Dianne Wiest is much too abrasive as Steve's psychologist, Doctor Aaron. She cannot decide who her character is. One minute she is speaking gently to Al, the next she is glaring and snapping at him. I'm afraid this psychologist might need a psychologist herself!
Despite the heavy subject material, the movie has its light moments. There are several comedic occasions provided by Steve's singing, and I must say, these points alone are reason enough to see the movie. Of course, there is also the inevitable victory, which makes everything beforehand worth it.
What is really refreshing about this movie is how clean it is. There are less than ten profanities in the entire film, and they are the only objectionable content.
"The Scout" is simply a fine piece of work, and a wonderful trip to take from everyday life.
As a baseball movie, Michael Ritchie's "The Scout" resembles less the realistic jock style of "Bull Durham" or "The Pride of the Yankees" than the fantastical tradition of "Field of Dreams" and "The Natural." But even in this dotty company, "The Scout" qualifies as a genuine -- and immensely enjoyable -- curiosity.
The main protagonist here is Al Percolo (Albert Brooks), a scout for the New York Yankees. Al's job is to beat the bushes for new talent, but lately his luck has ranged from bad to atrocious. As punishment for signing a young pitcher whose only accomplishment is to throw up on the mound, Al is sent by his boss (played with sinister relish by Lane Smith) to Mexico, where goats casually graze in the outfield.
In one town, though, Al comes across whiz kid Steve Nebraska (Brendan Fraser), who throws so hard that he routinely knocks the catcher and the umpire on their behinds. Realizing that Steve, who also hits like Babe Ruth, could be the greatest ballplayer who ever lived, Al moves quickly to sign him up and get him to New York.
However, soon after they arrive in the big city, Al begins to realize that the kid, who can't even remember how he got to Mexico in the first place, has more than a few screws loose. After a bidding war, the Yanks sign Steve to a $55 million contract, but when he hoists a photographer over his head during a press conference, the front office demands that he get a clean bill of mental health.
Working from a script by Brooks, Andrew Bergman and Monica Johnson, Ritchie gives these early scenes an unhurried, almost mellow feel. The film moves ahead at its own off-speed pace; like a knuckleball, it almost seems to float along.Read more ›
Steve Nebraska is played by Brendan Frasier in all of his boyish charm and innocence, or so it seems. As the story unfolds, we discover that Steve has some issues from his past and all of his power most likely lies in hidden rage and anger at an abusive father. Despite that, Steve gets a %55 million dollar contract with the condition that he begins to see a psychiatrist to assist with his issues. Played by the lovely Dianne Wiest, she is confused as to which of the two is more messed up! She is protective of Steve, yet understanding of Al, though she does not like that he only seems to be motivated by the money. This film was a light and funny story with some dramatic moments which in the end, leads to victory for both characters. It was a film that left me feeling happy!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Replacement arrived with cover jacket damaged. First product had both cover jacket and DVD case damaged and was returned.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
The ending could use a rewrite, plus Brooks made his character look more psychotic than Brendan Fraser's.Published 3 months ago by William R. Myers
Fantasy movie. Like the best of the best ball player, but when he starts playing the movie is just about over.Published 4 months ago by Jeff JAmes
This is a very funny and heartwarming story! I LOVE Brendan Fraser and he is awesome in this movie!Published 5 months ago by Lou Ann Price
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