Farm boy Jack Cooper is drafted into the minor league Santa Rosa Rockets as a pitcher because of his rocket arm. He being drafted is despite he not having organized baseball experience at any level. He is nicknamed "Deuce" by his fellow players as the two finger signal is the catcher's sign to throw a curve ball, Coop's favorite and most killer pitch. But in the early going, Coop demonstrates that he chokes under pressure as throwing his famous curve ball usually results in an out-of-the-park home run. Kirby, the son of the team owner, purchases a chimpanzee as the team mascot, who the team members name Ed Sullivan. The coach, Chubb, "decides" that Ed will room with Coop, a move not without ulterior motives. Ed ends up being an overgrown kid in mentality, which makes him a pain for Coop to manage, leading to one misadventure after another for the pair. Ed not only is a fan of baseball, but has a rocket arm of his own. As such, Chubb also decides to use Ed as a player at third base, a ... Written by
Ed, the chimp, is actually "just a guy in a suit" (according to Matt Leblanc), with a mechanically controlled head. That head made so much noise that all the dialogue in the scenes which included the "chimp" had to be re-dubbed in post-production. See more »
Dire children's movie that contains every cliché in the book
Jack Cooper is a pitcher on a minor league baseball team, hoping for a crack at the majors. Sadly his pitching, so perfect in practice, is way off in the games. Things get worse for him when the team drafts in a new mascot a monkey, Ed, and Cooper is selected to room with him. However Ed turns out to much more valuable to both the team and Cooper.
This film was shown in the UK at 11:30 at night! This was why I had taped it as I assumed it was more for adults than children, after all Clint Eastwood had done a couple of films with a monkey in it so why not? Watching I was left baffled as to why it was on so late at night when clearly the only people who would want to see it are children who will laugh at the sight of a monkey eating ice cream and dressing up. The plot is pointless here and no child would care anyway if you can't guess what will happen at the end then you are a fool! Will Cooper ever pitch again? What side will the coin fall on? Will Cooper and Ed bond? All these are givens and there is no enjoyment from watching the plot unfold exactly as you know it would.
While we're talking about lazy writing, how about the fact that every scene is a cliché. We have the monkey dressing up and causing mayhem etc every scene feels like it is a template to which a baseball film has been applied! None of it is funny (for adults anyway) and must of it is just puerile I laughed once and half-laughed another time. The laugh was Cooper saying `oh, I'm gonna spank that monkey' and the half was Ed watching TV and seeing the episode of Friends with a monkey in it. Other than this there is nothing.
Part of the film's problem is that Ed looks like two things and neither of them is a likeable monkey. First he never for once looks or moves like anything other than a guy in a monkey suit. Secondly his face and his expressions make him look like a slightly crazy old man I wondered if children would take to this character or be slightly freaked out by him. Matt LeBlanc plays a character in the mould of Joey but without the good writers to support him. He plays second fiddle to a monkey and you can see that the confidence and comfort he enjoys in Friends, is absent here. How people like Cobb, Warden and Caviezel must feel watching this is anyone's guess I suppose they were looking at it being a really big kids movie with the star of Friends, how could they lose?
Overall I found this a rather dire experience. Ed has no personality and looks really creepy and the comedy and plot are both as unimaginative as you'd expect them to be. To be a good kids' film this needed to have a bit of spark to it instead it brings to mind the fading embers on a dying fire.
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