MONEYBALL-- Directed by Bennett Miller/ Starring Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill/ screenplay written by Steven Zaillian & Aaron Sorkin/story by Stan Chervin from a book by Michael Lewis/PG-13/2hr30min
Bifocal Reviews by Barbara and Gordon Rich
(G) I will be doing this one without Barbara, because she has this “thing” against anything that relates to baseball, in any way. On the other hand, our son, Michael is a living sports encyclopedia who was all too happy to accompany me on this viewing and I’m glad he did. Knowing the historical backstory made the usual Sorkinesque telling of this seemingly mundane tale, that much more understandable for me. It is not because I don’t understand the game of baseball. In fact, it is my favorite game. However, this was really NOT a baseball movie. This was a movie about the business of successfully identifying a new solution to the age-old business problem of not having as much money as your opponent. MONEYBALL is the factual account of Oakland A's general manager Billy Beane, who put together a baseball club on a budget by employing a new technology. As many of you know, that is also a subject that is near and dear to my heart. In addition, I think Brad Pitt (who plays Beane) is one of the most underrated, celebrity superstars of all time. He is really good in this part, but there is a good amount of jealousy with everything he does. He is such a good actor, in fact that it usually doesn’t appear that he is acting. That may well be his downfall again come this year’s award season. Anyway, regardless of whether you like baseball or Brad Pitt (or dislike both) you will likely find this film entertaining, albeit a little too long for my tastes. Jonah Hill actually fits the part of the aggressively nervous, but astute nerd who shows Brad Pitt’s character how important mathematics can be in a game of inches and percentages. I still give it three binoculars.