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Moneyball

By CHRIS STAMM
If the dehydrated poetry of sports-page chatter fails to tickle you even a little bit, I can almost guarantee Moneyball will leave you cold. For although director Bennett Miller (Capote) and his elite writing team (Aaron Sorkin and Steven Zaillian) pad Oakland A's GM Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) with paternal longings and past defeats, there’s not a whole lot of squishy human interest to dig into here. This is a movie about baseball and the obsessed men who devote their lives to it. Make no mistake: There is heart in Moneyball, but it’s the part of the heart that swells at the sight of numbers on the back of a Topps card and breaks beneath tacky banners commemorating past championships. Mercifully short on baroque re-enactments of pivotal match-ups and pandering locker-room banter, Miller’s uptown update of Major League is almost wholly devoted to the front offices and underground clubhouses in which the game behind the game is played. The swift, captivating first half of Moneyball finds Beane, the sort of jocular ex-jock who fears stillness, failing at his thankless mission before teaming up with math geek Peter Brand (Jonah Hill), whose righteous faith in certain overlooked statistics convinces Beane to field a team of ostensibly mediocre has-beens and never-weres. The subsequent ups and downs of the 162-game season register as last-minute trades, squabbles with scouts, klatches with coaches and various other verbal maneuvers conducted in windowless rooms filled with cheap furniture. Pitt, perhaps the most orally fixated actor not employed by Vivid Video, chews his way through these assignations. Maybe we need the reminder: Sometimes it’s the stuff we don’t see that counts. And so: Let’s go, Oakland!
 
  • Genres: Drama
  • Running Time: 133 minutes
  • Release Date: Friday, September 23, 2011
  • Country: United States
  • Language: English
  • Critic's Score: 90
  • Starring: Brad Pitt [Billy Beane], Jonah Hill [Peter Brand], Philip Hoffman [Art Howe], Robin Wright [Sharon], Chris Pratt [Scott Hatteberg], Stephen Bishop [David Justice], Reed Diamond [Mark Shapiro], Brent Jennings [Ron Washington], Ken Medlock [Grady Fusion], Tammy Blanchard [Elizabeth Hatteberg], Jack McGee [John Poloni], Vyto Ruginis [Pittaro], Nick Searcy [Matt Keough], Glenn Morshower [Ron Hopkins], Casey Bond [Chad Bradford], Nick Porrazzo [Jeremy Giambi], Kerris Dorsey [Casey Beane], Arliss Howard [John Henry]
  • Directed by: Bennett Miller [Director], Steven Zaillian [Screenwriter], Aaron Sorkin [Screenwriter], Michael De Luca [Producer], Rachael Horovitz [Producer], Brad Pitt [Producer], Scott Rudin [Executive Producer], Andrew Karsch [Executive Producer], Sidney Kimmel [Executive Producer], Mark Bakshi [Executive Producer], Wally Pfister [Cinematographer], Jess Gonchor [Production Design], Christopher Tellefsen [Film Editor], Francine Maisler [Casting], Mychael Danna [Original Music], Kasia Walicka-Maimone [Costume Designer], Brad Ricker [Art Director], Nancy Haigh [Set Decoration]
  • Visit the Movie Website | Watch the trailer
 

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