Eastwood, Timberlake shine in “Trouble with the Curve”

As the MLB playoffs wind down, feed baseball fever with “Trouble with the Curve.” Although not likely to become a classic, “Trouble with the Curve” is a good film to watch with friends or family.

Clint Eastwood stars as Gus, an aging scout for the Atlanta Braves. Gus is in the final year of his contract in an era where sabermetrics and statistical analyses are becoming more valued for player evaluation than older methods. A few members of the Braves front office are beginning to doubt Gus’ ability to sign good prospects.

In the city, Gus’ daughter Mickey (Amy Adams) is focused on her career while attempting to balance her social and romantic life. Gus and Mickey do not have the greatest father-daughter relationship; Gus likes to be a hermit out in Carolina baseball country, while Mickey gives him his space.

As the draft nears in June, the stakes become higher for Gus as he must evaluate a high school baseball star. However, his eyes are failing him. Stubborn as he is, he tries to go on with his day-to-day life.

Mickey gets a tip that her father is struggling and is convinced to go out to Gus’ territory to try to repair their lack of communication. That is how Mickey ends up joining her father on his scouting trip, bringing her own eyes and her own baseball knowledge, while possibly jeopardizing a partnership in her company.

The plot has a few holes, but the overall story is satisfying and not in a cliché way. The film was partially shot the Georgia and captures the heart of high school baseball. The two lead performances in the film are noteworthy. Eastwood brings his wryness into his character and Adams balances that well, infusing confidence and emotion into Mickey. Justin Timberlake and John Goodman co-star.

Overall, “Trouble with the Curve” is definitely worth watching. This is not a film about the technical elements of baseball that will dazzle sports nerds, but it is a film about family, loyalty, and chances, which is what baseball is really all about.

Trouble with the Curve comes out on DVD and Blu-ray December 21, 2012. Rated PG-13.



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