Thursday, May 22, 2014

So Million Dollar Arm Exists

It was cheesy and borderline ignorant, but Million Dollar Arm showed sparks of purpose and menial excitement...
The fact is, this movie won't have any serious longterm fans. It won't set any hearts on fire. And it will not take your breath away. Million Dollar Arm is just another flick to get you out of your house or give you something to do for two hours. But it did very seriously try to have heart and sometimes that is enough to keep what could be a terrible movie off the garbage heap.

Jon Hamm's JB has a legitimate character arc and while it may have felt obvious/contrived, that didn't keep me from believing that a person could change in that way from that experience.
Lake Bell continues to capture my interest because she's got so much quirk (and if I'm being honest, an excellent body). But the real stars of this film... the guys that really keep it from falling into a vomit stained mess, are the Indians... Pitobash, Suraj Sharma, and Madhur Mittal. These guys were too likable to let the movie crash... which is funny because that kind of goes hand in hand with a major theme of the movie itself. Wow Meta.

What the movie does suffer from is the tepid feeling that we've seen this all before in one form or another. Perhaps that comes from the idea that this is indeed meant to be based on a true story, but that doesn't mean it's okay for the filmmakers to insult us with this kind of moment: They tell us the rule that in order for the lefty to win the competition he'd have to throw a perfect strike above (I believe it was) 86 or a wild 93 (I'm paraphrasing because I don't recall the exact numbers)...

now based on the rules they had just given us, and the fact that we already knew ahead of time this kid was going to be one of the leads based on the fact that they only followed two Indians in the entire competition (and from advertising) we can easily assume that he's gonna throw one of these pitches. Then for some odd reason the world slows down as if we're supposed to feel suspense of some kind. I'm sorry, you're not gonna take my breath away be slowing things down... especially when I already know what's coming. Give the kid a chance to act out his emotions in a natural, real time moment and let the actions occur fluidly. I would have been much more excited watching him throw the pitch and then getting everyone else's reactions as they then tell us that's the only thing he could have possibly done to win... and wouldn't you believe it?? He did!

Oh well. This is a Disney sports flick. Probably not the best place to be sending formal complaint letters. The deafness of ears probably doesn't come from a lack of respect for the craft so much as the enormous amount of money rammed down some of these guys ears. I'm sorry, I'm being a jerk.
In reality, Million Dollar Arm wasn't all bad. It had heart and like I said before, that's just enough to keep it from the trash compactor.

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