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Jack Maybrick Says, in 2-5-2010 at 02:35:48 from     

The movie, a fictitious baseball story based on the real-life Cleveland Indians baseball team, is a little outdated.

When it was made in 1989, the Cleveland Indians, playing their home baseball games in a cavernous football stadium that had the capacity to house many fans but drew so few of them, were probably the epitome of baseball mediocrity and a very likely choice for a movie about a Cinderella-like baseball team.

But Chief Wahoo’s followers have since gotten themselves an excellent new downtown stadium. They’ve fallen on hard times again, but during the 1990’s, they actually distinguished themselves as an American League powerhouse. They came within 3 outs of winning a World Championship in 1997.

This movie predates that or perhaps it anticipates the rebirth of the Indians, but beyond that, there’s little to be said on its behalf.

Take the greatest game in the world, baseball, and the greatest philosophy in the world, misogyny, and you appear to have an unbeatable combination for a movie. But unfortunately, such is not the case here.

Oh yes, one can nod his head knowingly and agree that that’s just what they’re all like as the Indians’ distaff owner (her character seems loosely based on Georgia Frontierre, owner of the Los Angeles/Anaheim/St. Louis Rams FOOTBALL team) tries to unman the dozens of hardworking baseball players who have too much pride to lose on schedule for her.

And there’s some entertainment value in watching the lads get back at the dominatrix – defying her by continuing to win ballgames, as a photographic replica of her is stripped of clothing after each victory.

All that is fine, but basically the plot is so shallow that even the saving graces of baseball and misogyny can’t really rescue it.

If you have any familiarity with baseball or sports movies, you won’t be surprised by a single twist in plot that takes place during this movie – not a single one. The plot twists have all the deceptiveness of a hanging curve ball and are as easy to read in advance.

In fact, if you have a grain of intelligence, I promise you that when you watch the movie for the first time, you’ll have no problem guessing exactly – I said EXACTLY – how the movie ends. You’re not SUPPOSED to be able to guess, but I guarantee that you will. That’s how little imagination was exercised by the creators.

And of course, the creators didn’t even MEAN to make a misogynistic movie to begin with. This was one of Rene Russo’s earlier movies, in which she began to establish her typecasted reputation as one of those disgusting “gal pals” (yeah right, like a man can actually be FRIENDS with the woman that he’s sleeping with!).

Russo, as Tom Berenger’s athletic girlfriend, is supposed to counterbalance the evil presented by Margaret Whitton.

But Russo’s dramatic presence in this film is less than what was probably intended. Her “goodness” (assuming that one feels that a female athlete can properly represent the forces of “good”) actually casts a very thin shadow on this film and doesn’t at all compare to Whitton’s evil. So the movie is at least realistic in this respect.

This movie is also an early Charlie Sheen effort, in which he stars as the hip closing relief pitcher Rick Vaughn, the “Wild Thing”. This character would later metamorphose into real-life National League closer Mitch Williams (Cubs, Phillies), who was known for being wildly effective (usually) in a way that would terrify his own fans.

In this movie, Vaughn’s theme song, of course, is the rock-and-roll classic “Wild Thing”, but instead of using the old Trogs sound-track for this purpose, the movie-makers have some all-girl group singing instead.

Now, does that make any sense? To have an all-girl group sing (as the Trogs did), “Wild Thing, you make my thing swing”?

No, the film-makers didn’t TRY to make a misogynistic movie, but bless their hearts, they made one anyway. It is, after all (heh-heh), the tale and not he who tells it, and commendations are in order for this accidental virtue.

James Gammons’s reassuring masculine presence as the embattled Indians manager is another saving grace, and trivia buffs will also be interested in the presence of a younger Wesley Snipes.

Baseball! Misogyny! Familiar faces! And yet the movie STILL doesn’t satisfy. I’ll probably never find out if the sequel was an improvement.
Rating: 2 / 5

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Anonymous Says, in 2-5-2010 at 02:59:00 from     

How can any self-respecting baseball fan say they actually LIKE this movie? It doesn’t respect the game. It’s an insult to the intelligence of anyone who watches it, and downright scandalous in light of 2 terrifically realistic movies (“Bull Durham” and “Field of Dreams”) from about the same time. If you want slapstick pratfalls and sophomoric humor, there are lots of better places to go. If you want baseball, stay away from this one.
Rating: 1 / 5

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Deborah Jean Englander Says, in 2-5-2010 at 04:11:41 from     

It was very good. It is one the kids would enjoy.
Rating: 3 / 5

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Anonymous Says, in 2-5-2010 at 06:10:29 from     

Major League was way too predictable from beginning to end. Though it had a great cast, I would really call it “funny funny” because I didn’t laugh much. However, it was in no part boring and I watched it without stopping once. The point is…baseball players who are horrible is not my idea of really really funny, like everyone else said. It’s also not my kind of Weslet Snipes’s movie, comparing it to Blade and the other movies he has starred in. I suggest you rent it first. If you love it, buy it. If you don’t, then plainly return it the first day you got it and don’t see the sequel. By the way…Major League 3: Back to the Minors has the complete same story and jokes so if you see any of the sequels first don’t expect anything new in the original. I give it three stars.

Time: 105 minutes.

Rated R for strong language, brief rear nudity, and crude humor.
Rating: 3 / 5

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Sharp Marble Says, in 2-5-2010 at 08:31:41 from     

Fun movie about baseball players who get a second/last chance. It’s not Shakespeare, but who cares?
Rating: 5 / 5

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