6.6/10
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232 user 114 critic

For Love of the Game (1999)

A washed up pitcher flashes through his career.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)

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7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
...
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Gary Wheeler
Addie Daddio ...
Waitress
...
Frank Perry (as JK Simmons)
...
...
Himself
...
Ken Strout (as Carmine D. Giovinazzo)
Bill E. Rogers ...
Davis Birch (as Bill Rogers)
Hugh Ross ...
Mike Udall
...
Arnetia Walker ...
Airport Bartender
...
Yankee Fan in Bar
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Storyline

A Detroit pitcher Billy Chapel, reflects on his life in major league baseball, after he finds out his girlfriend moves to London for a job. Thus forcing the ball player to analyze his life and how his career as a player, and his life without her will change, thus altering his priorities between his career winding to a close, choosing what his path will be, the love of baseball or the love of his life? Written by Jared Johnson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Billy Chapel must choose between the woman he loves and the game he lives for.

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief strong language and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 September 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

For the Love of the Game  »

Box Office

Budget:

$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$13,041,685 (USA) (19 September 1999)

Gross:

$35,168,395 (USA) (28 November 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The shots of Billy Chapel's parents at the beginning of the movie are Kevin Costner's actual parents. See more »

Goofs

Billy Chapel would not be able to be traded to the Giants. He could invoke the 5/10 Rule whereby players who have been with a club for at least 5 consecutive years and have been a major league player for at least 10 years cannot be traded without their consent. However it is mentioned that he will be a free agent at the end of the year, at which time the new ownership can simply choose not to re-sign him to a contract with the Tigers. See more »

Quotes

Jane Aubrey: It's never quite how you play it in your head.
Billy Chapel: What about the whole deal thing?
Jane Aubrey: What deal?
Billy Chapel: You know, you do what you do, I do what I do.
Jane Aubrey: You believed that? I was lying. I was trying to be the man. And I was doing a damn good job of it until you invited me down here. You were right. I was afraid. I was afraid you were gonna break my heart into 1,000 pieces.
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Connections

Referenced in The Upside of Anger (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

High Hopes
Written by Jimmy Van Heusen and Sammy Cahn
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User Reviews

 
Even If You Hate Baseball -- and Kevin Costner -- This Movie Still Rocks!
12 October 2006 | by (Troy, NY) – See all my reviews

Why do I love this movie so much? I'm not a baseball fan. I didn't really like FIELD OF DREAMS. And I hated BULL DURHAM. Yet this movie just captivates me every time I watch it.

Part of it is the tight, real-time structure -- the whole movie takes place in a man's head while he pitches a perfect baseball game on the mound. It therefore combines the tension of a thriller with the poignant emotions of an elegy.

But what I loved most about this movie is that there are no clichés. Kevin Costner's character, Billy Chapel, is not a "sports underdog." It's very clear he is a great athlete who has had a great career, and that he can walk away at any time with lots of money and lots of respect. The only reason that pitching the perfect game matters to him is purely for the perfection of his art -- for the love of the game.

At the same time, not all the action is on the baseball diamond. In the romantic drama, Kevin Costner does much more than play the usual Costner "nice guy." Billy Chapel can be cold, egocentric, and difficult -- just like any other creative artist. But he always surrounds himself with people who are strong enough to challenge him and help him stay grounded. It's no exaggeration to say that the supporting cast in this film -- John C. Reilly as the catcher, Kelly Preston as the girl friend, and Jena Malone as the girl friend's adorable teenage daughter -- are very much the stars. They really set Costner up for an unusually mature, disciplined performance. Just the way Chapel's team mates set him up for the perfect game! This movie wasn't that well received by the critics. I remember one frightfully cultured fellow at the NEW YORKER sniffing that Costner's character is "arrogant." Note well that if an artist or an intellectual is cold and demanding, it's okay. But athletes should be jolly, ape like simpletons, the kind who know their place. This complex, poignant movie is actually quite subversive, since it forces you to realize that baseball is a thinking man's game and that athletes (and their working class fans) are not nearly as stupid as the real simpletons who write for the NEW YORKER.

Shocking!!!


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