Calvin Marshall (2009) Poster

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Not Just A Great Sports Movie
wilhoiteb31 March 2010
Steve Zahn absolutely nailed his character and put up one of his best performances, if not the best performance, of his career. Frost and Lombardo were also very good in their roles. They each carried the emotions and subtleties of their characters respective lives and life choices to realistic and believable levels. The supporting cast were also excellent.

Calvin Marshall transcended your typical sports film to convey the choices we all face in life when it comes to following our dreams, our talents, and what is important in our life. It's not a fairytale story, or the story of the kid from the wrong side of the tracks overcoming seemingly insurmountable odds, or the story of the washed up veteran making an improbable comeback, this is the story of everyman.
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Wonderful film!
barbara_toombs20 April 2010
Calvin Marshall is one of those films you wish EVERYONE could see, but sadly, because it's one of those fantastic independent films that doesn't have the advantage of the multi- million-dollar Hollywood "machine" behind it in terms of marketing, it may get lost in the shuffle.

I really HOPE not, because this film is the perfect blend of humor, drama, great casting, great acting and a great script that comes along only rarely. Steve Zahn is truly fantastic as the has-been minor ballplayer turned junior college coach; he perfectly conveys the pathetic-yet- touching character's frustration at what he has become. Alex Frost is completely believable in his role as the title character; channeling early John Cusack, he has an immediate likability and believability factor that audiences can easily relate to (and root for).

Remember, though, that this is NOT a "baseball movie". Yes, it is (on the surface) about baseball. And yes, anyone who has ever been involved in baseball on ANY level will undoubtedly love it and relate to it. But it is really a movie about LIFE: about hopes, dreams, relationships, success, failure, love, laughs and tears. This movie will DEFINITELY be added to my collection when it comes out on DVD (and that's saying a lot--not many movies make that list of begging to be watched over and over again. Calvin Marshall does.
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Johnny_Hing10 July 2011
Warning: Spoilers
I'm still trying to figure out why this was labeled a comedy. This movie is a drama; light-hearted perhaps, but a drama nonetheless. Calvin Marshall, with turn-of-the century legend Honus Wagner as his sports idol, somehow or other ekes his way onto the junior college baseball team on grit and enthusiasm alone. Well, that and perhaps a bit of pity from his coach, who referred to him once as the "mascot." He meets and falls in love with the freshman volleyball star, who is having to cope with the failing health of her mother. Steve Zahn was great as his coach, and should have received second billing in this movie, IMHO.

This is not one of those corny underdog movies where you'll see Calvin step in for an injured player in a crucial championship game and hit a dramatic home-run in the bottom of the 9th with the crowd going wild. Nothing like that at all. In fact, about the only time you see Calvin play, apart from tryouts and practice, is on his recreational softball team.

This movie is about relationships, and making tough life decisions, not only for Calvin, but for his girlfriend Tori Jensen, who is talented enough at volleyball that she is receiving scholarship offers from Universities around the country.

The ending was decent... simple, yet believable and solid. Again, nothing corny, nothing comical, nothing over-the-top.

One minor complaint was that I didn't find out until 2/3rds of the way through that this movie was set in 1986, not the present. Perhaps it was mentioned early on in the movie, but if so, I missed it. That's a good 23 year time difference from when this movie was made, which is significant, so it seems that this could have been addressed at the beginning.

Moderately entertaining. I wasn't disappointed.
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Just A Darn Good Little Film
Willie-1215 May 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Every now and then you come across a movie that just hits the right note at the right time in life. I had heard of Calvin Marshall before, but never really had much interest. It's not that I don't like baseball. I do. And It's certainly not that I don't like movies. I love 'em. But this is one that, to be honest, I don't even remember being released in theaters. And if it was, it must not have turned very many heads. In fact, I wasn't surprised at all to find Marshall to be one of the movies available on a certain internet movie rental company's site that makes a majority of its money on a streaming service. And the reason I wasn't surprised is because these are the exact types of movies you find on that streaming service. They're the "rarely ever heard of." They're the rejects. And most of them really aren't that good. And so after searching for quite a while tonight for something to watch, I finally just went a head and hit the button on Marshall. And I have to admit, after a bit of a slow and somewhat confusing start, this movie grew on me. It's not the best baseball movie you'll ever see. The script is decent, but nothing earth shattering. The acting is fine (with Zahn shining most). But what raises Marshall from the level of "mediocre" to the level of "pretty darn good little movie," is its characters. It is, in the truest sense of the phrase, a character driven story, and it, like its title character, has a lot of heart. And in the end it left me with a smile on my face. And let's just say that recently, the smiles have been few and far between. So, for me personally, that alone is enough for me to recommend Calvin Marshall. It really is a pretty good film that, unlike so much other stuff out there, should have garnered more attention than it did.
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Good feel good movie ...One and a Half thumbs Up.
ownbusinessmexico23 September 2010
Warning: Spoilers
I will say like most movies, I never usually read the reviews before I watch, so I can really get a feel for the movie as it comes to me off the screen and let my emotions of that moment really "feel the moment" I am in. Like most I am sure we watch movies to get the enjoyment and really let yourself be absorbed as though you are right in the movie. The best ones all do that to you.

This movie "Calvin Marshall" was like that for me, being an ex Ball player scouted by the big leagues, and knee problems never got me there. This is the reverse of Calvin Marshall played by Alex Frost, about a guy who doesn't seem to have the talent, never would ever get to the Game but has a heart that truthfully was too giving to ever get there. It's a story about life and how we flow with the choices that come to us, and the times in our lives we feel confident in something (because something else in our life was being done super unexpectedly well which flowed our confidence into everything else we were doing ). Isn't that the moral is that we never know what is going to be right around the corner that can just bring that energized Life right out of us.

Steve Zahn played a great role (really) but still the mean coach , ex Ball wonder guy turned drunken loser every night, was my personal turnoff because he is also in all his other roles just too nice a guy and after all the issues with coaches and molesting of players lately, I liked him but just didn't like the role , I thought the script could have been improved to work him into a bigger person which would have given us a more feel good movie, his script was a disadvantage to where that movie could have been the high 8 to 9's (which in my reviews is the near 10).

The new girl Top Volleyball "girlfriend" played by Michelle Lombardo was brilliant. She was not only refreshing to watch and see she was the perfect person to make that role really shine, I have never personally seen her before, but with her acting I am sure she will get some great future roles. And of course , I was a Volleyball Beach expert and one of the top players in school, and in that sport your either great or nothing, so I felt her competitive edge really pushed the movie up in adrenalin for me watching it.

However, that adrenalin rush I felt and I was hoping it would have rubbed off on Calvin Marshall, but it didn't really and thus my only disappointment for this was it gave me a different ending then I was originally hoping for but that is really what this was about ….being prepared to not always get exactly what we really want, and the great person we turn into anyways.

from "The Movie Buff" saying it in his No BS way... the Pen Fears No One.... John "Super Snake" Cobra.
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A watchable movie, but not deserving of its rating thus far IMHO.
leetwanker1 November 2010
Warning: Spoilers
This is like a "life REALLY sucks" version of Rudy if you swap football for baseball. We were never really showed anything the kid was really good at, I guess it was sports broadcasting if I had to make a guess.

I'm glad that he ended up with the possibility of getting the girl (in the end anyway), but your coach that has thus far been treating you like a beloved mascot all of the sudden moves in on this girl that's 20 years younger and pretty much no chance with, him moving in on our "hero's" girl is just sleazy. Don't get me wrong, I'm not the type who only enjoys feel-good movies.

I guess my main gripe is that it was just plain boring. I found myself 45 minutes into a movie - wondering why I was watching it. Luckily the bit of romance between Calvin and Tori, that made it just interesting enough for me to finish and write this review, from the perspective of the "average guy" instead of the independent film groupies who rave about this below average flick.

I really hope it was based very tightly on a true story - else whoever the hell wrote this needs to find a new job. I will say however that the acting was pretty decent, but all they can do is follow a poor script.

/end rant - hope this helps and keeps you from wasting an hour and a half of your life. Cheers
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