Recently E! published its list of the top ten baseball movies of all time (sorry, I can no longer find the link online). The list itself is obvious, but I disagree with the order:
- The Natural: The 1994 Robert Redford vehicle keeps on going, and an enhanced version was released in the last year. There is a bit more "woo" and magic than necessary, but overall I can't argue with putting it on top.
- Field of Dreams: I suppose this must be on the list, although there is a strong gender split on this one. While watching Kevin Kostner in his prime was always delightful, I find that most women find this 1989 flick a bit whacky. The Iowa farmer plows under a field because he's hearing voices, and the wife doesn't have him committed? Really? Seriously? But guys, especially the baseball dudes in my immediate family, just love this one. Sigh.
- Pride of the Yankees: Pass the tissues, please. Anyone who doesn't cry by the end of this 1942 classic is bionic.
- Major League: How did this get up to number 4? It's a fun romp with a bunch of eye-candy guys, but compared to those below it... Well, I have to move it down a few slots.
- Eight Men Out: I have not seen this one all the way through, but the last half of it is excellent. Unfortunately, it's a downer, and not in the inspiring way that #3 and #7 bring tears to your eyes.
- A League of Their Own: Our cat had to have a baseball inspired name. When we picked out a girl kitten, my husband and son agreed that only one woman in "baseball" would do - Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis) from this 1992 flick. I would move this one up the list, simply because of the way it portrays the joy and empowerment of the game.
- Bang the Drum Slowly: Brian's Song for baseball. Not my favorite.
- The Sandlot: Move this one waaaaay up the list. A bunch of pre-teen boys playing baseball and getting in trouble with a Babe Ruth autographed baseball, a burly guy, and a junkyard dog. This movie captures the magic of baseball for boys and their buddies. It helped me understand why my husband is so devoted to a game that seems mostly like applied beer drinking to me.
- The Bad News Bears: Misfit kids with a dysfunctional misfit coach- who helps the other the most? Your guess is as good as mine. Good movie from 1976 (you can skip the 2005 remake), but not one I have felt compelled to buy (see #1, #6, #8, and #10).
- Bull Durham: My favorite! OK, so it deals as much with sex as with sports, but still. As the mom yelling "Breathe through your eyelids" while my son pitched, I owe a lot to this 1988 movie.
For the next 3 months we can devote ourselves to football full-time. Maybe in February I can grab a copy of Eight Men Out and finally see the whole movie... While we dream of spring.