Bopping with Niall JP O'Leary

Niall O'Leary insists on sharing his hare-brained notions and hysterical emotions. Personal obsessions with cinema, literature, food and alcohol feature regularly.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


It's a bit of a cliché to talk about how baseball tends to inspire good movies. But it does (consider 'The Natural', 'Field of Dreams, 'Eight Men Out'). 'Moneyball' supports the cliché. Telling how statistics helped the Oakland Athletics get their mojo back, it, like its all-rounder hero, Billy Beane (Brad Pitt), performs exceptionally well in all areas of the game. Admittedly there is a lot of baseball, and yes, statistics, and I am not a sports fan, let alone a baseball fan, but it works. Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill are exceptional as the two men determined to upset the sports apple cart (it often plays as a buddy movie). The screenplay by Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin is rock solid. Bennett Miller's direction never flags, despite plenty of stodgy sports opportunities to do so. Then to cap everything Michael Danna's Elliot-Goldenthal-esque score adds a large chunk of class. They're the elements of the game, but the playing - the mix of romanticism and hard-edged pragmatism - gives you all the thrills of the 'last chance to get it right' story, while never allowing you to forget the realities that swallow the dreams.
It just works, okay? It just works.



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