A League of Their Own
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Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, and Madonna star in this major-league comedy from the team that brought you Big. Hanks stars as Jimmy Dugan, a washed-up ballplayer whose big league days are over. Hired to coach in the All-American Girls Baseball League of 1943, while the male pros are at war, Dugan finds himself drawn back into the game by the heart and heroics of his all-girl team. Jon Lovitz adds a scene-stealing cameo as the sarcastic scout who recruits Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis), the baseball dolly with a Babe Ruth swing. Teammates Madonna, Lori Petty and Rosie O'Donnell round out the roster, taking the team to the World Series. Based on the true story of the pioneering women who blazed the trail, on the fields and off, for generations of athletes.
Penny Marshall's popular 1992 comedy sheds light on a little-known chapter of American sports history with its story of a struggling team in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. The league was formed when the recruiting of soldiers during World War II resulted in a shortage of men's baseball teams. The AAGPBL continued after the war (until 1954), and Marshall's movie depicts the league in full swing, beginning when a savvy baseball scout (Jon Lovitz) finds a pair of promising new players in small-town Oregonian sisters (Geena Davis, Lori Petty). The sisters are signed to play for the Rockford Peaches near Chicago, whose new manager (Tom Hanks) is a former home-run king who wrecked his career with alcoholism. They're all a bunch of underdogs, and Marshall (with a witty script by Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel) does a fine job of establishing a colorful team of supporting players including Madonna and (in her movie debut) Rosie O'Donnell. It's a conventional Hollywood sports story (Marshall's never been one to take dramatic risks), but the stellar cast is delightful, and the movie's filled with memorable moments, witty dialogue, and agreeable sentiment. And just remember: there's no crying in baseball! --Jeff Shannon
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When she got back, she had to see the movie. We all really enjoyed watching. A great movie, but even more inspirational for younger girls.
What makes this pairing even more interesting is that the theatrical versions and what could have been versions of these films had much different tones. Both films theatrical release were crowd pleasers, but watching deleted scenes and or source material and you'll find much heavier and darker versions of these films. Personally I think they made the right decisions of both of these films. The extra baggage really didn't fit either of stories the way they were being told.
The Natural has had 2 DVD releases, the original theatrical cut and the director's cut. Both releases had different bonus features on them. I was happy to find that all are included here. With over 2 hours of material including making of the film, changes in story, photography and the history of the book and sport, these features are some of the best I've seen especially on such a bargain priced package. Thankfully the superior theatrical release of the film is presented here, not the half hearted directer's cut.
A League of their Own is presented here as it was on the 20th anniversary Blu Ray, with all bonus features ported over and an excellent transfer. While both films have been criticized for being formulaic, there is no denying their entertainment value and staying power. If you're looking to add these films to your collection, this double feature 2 disc set is a great deal.
When the war kicks up in the Pacific and in Germany, Men's Baseball takes a hiatus so the owners of Baseball decide to initiate a woman's Baseball league......"4 teams, 16 girls to a team, that's 64 girls!"
Director Penny Marshall did a great job of casting older versions of the younger players' parts, especially Madonna's, Geena Davis's and Rosie O'Donnell's characters.
She also did a tremendous job of putting the older actresses and actors in the Baseball Hall Of Fame at the end of the movie next to their younger selves, it just made for a very unique and emotional experience.
The Baseball scenes were very well done and all the injuries that some of the actresses received in the film were real, including the slide into third by one of them who got this real ugly looking raspberry on her thigh and Rosie's bandage on her knee requiring several stitches.
The movie was presented in widescreen and was crisp and clear in sound and picture, and contains several bonus features including Director and cast commentary, 15 deleted scenes, "Nine Memorable Innings" Documentary and Madonna's "This used to be my playground" music video.
This movie is a must have in any Baseball movie fan's collection, it's filled with laughs and I definitely recommend it.