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W.S. Van Dyke
The movie is about Chicago White Sox pitcher Monty Stratton (Jimmy Stewart), who in the 1930s, compiled a 37-19 won-loss record in three seasons. After he became the winningest right-hander in the American League, his major league career ended prematurely when a hunting accident in 1938 forced doctors to amputate his right leg. With a wooden leg and his wife Ethel's (June Allyson) help, Stratton made a successful minor league comeback in 1946, continuing to pitch in minor leagues throughout the rest of the 1940s and into the 1950s. Written by
In Monte Stratton's pitching debut versus the NY Yankees, Joe DiMaggio is shown circling the bases in stock footage. However, Stratton debuted in 1934 and DiMaggio didn't show up in the majors until 1936. See more »
Boy, I took so many dancing lessons through the season, it's a wonder I've even got strength enough to pitch.
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Supposedly Jimmy Stewart did not really want to do this film. However, he changed his mind when it was pointed out to him by the bosses at MGM that it would inspire veterans of World War II who had limited mobility. One inspirational scene that occurs is the one where he and his son walk together for the first time. It is complemented nicely by June Allyson who is exceptional and perfectly cast as Stewart's wife (this was the first of three films they made together).
The supporting roles are worth noting, too. Agnes Moorhead refrains from chewing the scenery, in a performance that is very understated as the mother. And this is another film where Frank Morgan plays a paternal role to one of Stewart's characters. Morgan seems very lively in this offering. The game scenes are equally lively, and the film continues to remain uplifting with each viewing.
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