Monday, January 21, 2013

Movies: Trouble With the Curve

I'm a sucker for baseball movies and I've been a Clint Eastwood fan for going on 50 years now, so it figures I'd like TROUBLE WITH THE CURVE, in which Clint plays an aging baseball scout whose eyesight is failing. Amy Adams is his estranged lawyer daughter. Justin Timberlake is a washed-up ballplayer who's trying to become a broadcaster. Clint has to find a good prospect to save his job and defeat the evil sabremetricians. A bunch of fine character actors such as John Goodman, Robert Patrick, Ed Lauter, and Bob Gunton are along for the ride. TROUBLE WITH THE CURVE is predictable and as manipulative as all get-out, but sometimes I just don't care about such things. I had a fine time watching it.


Bill Crider said...

Same here, James.

Walker Martin said...

I don't bother going to the theaters much anymore but I went to see this one. I love baseball and this story about the aging scout with poor eyesight was very enjoyable. Something I can identify with as I type this while squinting at the computer screen!

wayne d. dundee said...

Ditto all the way around.

Walker Martin said...

I've been thinking about this movie ever since James posted his comments. The job of a baseball scout is one of the more fascinating in the sport. You are on the go all the times, traveling around the country, eating fast food, staying in second rate motels.

If you just attend major league games then it is possible that you have never seen these guys performing their duties with speed guns and pitching charts. They usually sit behind home plate or in areas where most fans don't even notice them.

But with minor league ball it is a completely different story. The stadiums are alot smaller and it's easy to get a seat close to home plate. There you will see several baseball scouts in action. They usually are no longer young, former players, coaches, and managers who know the game inside out.

I go to many Trenton Thunder baseball games and I've talked to several of the more friendly scouts. Many of them would rather not be bothered but often you will find men who want to talk baseball even to fans.

It's a tough and often lonely job but when they find a legitimate prospect the rewards are high.

old guy rambling said...

Looking forward to seeing this one.

James Reasoner said...

I wrote a mystery story set in the Fifties that had a baseball scout as the detective and always wanted to get back to the character, but I never have. (The story is "The Zephyr Flash" in the anthology MURDER FOR FATHER, in case any of you were wondering.)