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For Love of the Game
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Kevin Costner (Field of Dreams) stars in For Love of the Game, a heartwarming drama about love, life and the perfect game. Legendary Detroit Tigers pitcher Billy Chapel (Costner) has always been better at baseball than at love. Nobody knows that better than his on-again, off-again girlfriend, Jane (Kelly Preston). At the end of a disappointing season, just before what may be the last professional game of his life, Jane tells Billy she's leaving him. Now, with his career and his love life in the balance, Billy battles against his physical and emotional limits as he plays the game of his life and must come to a critical decision that will change his future forever.
Billy Chapel (Kevin Costner) is having a bad day. His girlfriend Jane (Kelly Preston, stunning as ever) says she's leaving, and his boss (Brian Cox) says he's selling the business and ace employee Billy may be out of job. Sounds like business as usual for an old-fashioned veteran. However, the business is baseball and for Billy Chapel, the 40-year old former all-star for the Detroit Tigers, it means his career--and his life--is at a crossroads.
Although it is no Bull Durham, For Love of the Game finds a solid and very believable role for Costner. The film is based on Michael Shaara's (The Killer Angels) stream-of-consciousness novel (the rough manuscript was found after his death 1988). The entire film takes place on Billy's day on the mound against the Yankees, a meaningless late-season game for the Tigers, but everything for Billy. In flashbacks, he lingers over his long relationship with Jane and his baseball career (from World Series heroism to a career-threatening injury). His one viable link to the game at hand is his catcher, played winningly by John C. Reilly. Costner, like Chapel, is looking for one more great performance, but the film is too simplistic and loopy at times to resonate. The love story has an extra helping of cuteness, and legendary baseball announcer Vin Scully nearly takes on a leading role, waxing grandiloquent. It's no grand slam, but a solid double. --Doug Thomas
- Aspect Ratio : 2.35:1
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : No
- MPAA rating : s_medPG13 PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
- Product Dimensions : 7.5 x 5.5 x 0.5 inches; 4 Ounces
- Item model number : TM2595
- Director : Sam Raimi
- Media Format : Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
- Run time : 2 hours and 18 minutes
- Release date : December 26, 2005
- Actors : Kevin Costner, Kelly Preston, John C. Reilly, Brian Cox, Jena Malone
- Dubbed: : French
- Producers : Armyan Bernstein, Amy Robinson
- Language : English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (DTS 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Unqualified
- Studio : Universal Pictures Home Entertainment
- ASIN : 078324021X
- Writers : Dana Stevens
- Country of Origin : USA
- Number of discs : 1
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,234 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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For me, as he worked through his life as he worked through the innings of the game, it was very nearly a perfect thing of beauty to see. I love the pace of baseball, the numbers, the rivalries that go back many decades and the elegance of a game that is both simple and very complex at the same time; just like life.
He ended his career on a perfect note but even better he finally got it as his team helped him to finish what he could not do alone; he needed them and in the process he figured out what else he needed to really live his life.
It does not matter how many times I watch this movie as it always gets to me and likely always will; perhaps I am just an old romantic at heart but I really don't care as I feel better after watching this movie and I like that fact.
I know this is not much of a technical review but then again I am not a theater or movie critic. I am simply someone who loves baseball and who likes movies that make me feel better. If you are even roughly the same then there is a fair chance you will enjoy this movie.
Kevin Costner has always been a wonderful athlete and was doing his own pitching in the movie. His baseballs were going 85 miles per hour rather than the 95-110 miles per hour of a professional pitcher but they were curve-balls fastballs and sliders that were right over home plate. His athleticism can be seen in "Dances With Wolves" when, in a very memorable scene he rides his horse Cisco with his arms outstretched laterally past a line of Confederate soldiers "Shooting at him" (Not really, after all these are the movies). He also does his own batting and catching in the baseball catching in "Field Of Dreams" and his own golfing in several over movies.
Mr. Costner's great athleticism ans well as as his wonderful acting and the superb performances of the supporting cast in "For Love Of The Game" make it a solidly "Five Star Movie".
Top reviews from other countries
This film, the last in his baseball trilogy, centres on the last game of the season for an ageing pitcher (Billy Mitchell) after a distinguished career and tells the story of the game, interspersed with flashback scenes to his on-off relationship with Jane (played by Kelly Preston) and also to earlier parts of his career. Costner is not afraid to show the self- absorbed side of professional sports players, with almost everything coming second to their career.
The film takes its' time to develop the story properly and makes for an enjoyable evenings entertainment, even if it gets a bit trite at times. Costner's love affair with baseball shines through and seems to elicit some of his best performances.
So, if you love sports movies with a bit of romance thrown in, then you should enjoy this one! I found myself enjoying the actual game scenes even more than those in his earlier film `Bull Durham', as they were so well filmed. My wife and I watched this for the third time the other night and found it to be as enjoyable as the first time.
Great acting from all sides and a good all rounder rom com with decent script behind it.
And as a bonus you get to see his lovely behind in a tight pair of pants in the locker room, whats not to love?