Up-and-coming sports reporter rescues a homeless man ("Champ") only to discover that he is, in fact, a boxing legend believed to have passed away. What begins as an opportunity to resurrect Champ's story and escape the shadow of his father's success becomes a personal journey as the ambitious reporter reexamines his own life and his relationship with his family.
Samuel L. Jackson,
By 2008, more than 25 percent of major league baseball players were born in Latin America. At 19, Miguel "Sugar" Santos, a serious kid from the Dominican Republic, signs with Kansas City. He flies to Phoenix for tryouts and is sent to the Class A team "The Swing" in the fictional town of Bridgetown, Iowa, where he lives with a farm family. Thus begins his odyssey: leaving his mom and girlfriend; living in an alien culture; learning English; overcoming jitters; working hard; achieving early success; navigating friendships, occasional racism, and a woman's mixed signals; dealing with an injury; trying performance-enhancing drugs; and, searching for his place in the world. Will he make it to the Majors; will he play in New York? Written by
Some of the last names of the Quad City Swing players in the film were those of actual players on the team. However, they were not portrayed by the real Swing players. During filming, the real players were still in their regular season and then post-season. See more »
In the "thank you" list during the end credits Iowa Governor Chet Culber is mentioned. The governor's name is Culver, not Culber. See more »
There are a plethora of Dominican baseball stars in the Major Leagues which have become all-stars such as Pedro Martinez, Hanley Ramirez, Sammy Sosa, Robinson Cano, and David "Big Papi" Ortiz; and that is just the microcosm of the Domincanos who have had major contributions to "la pelota". But for every one Hanley or Robinson or even Big Papi, there are tons of Sugars who are vying to find that ticket to the MLB show. "Sugar" is a noble and touching narrative of Miguel "Sugar" Santos, a young Dominican pelotero who heads to the states to play Single A minor league baseball. "Sugar" accentuates the taste buds of young Dominicanos who want to better their lives and support their families by succeeding in the sport they love the most. But "Sugar" is even more than that; it also focuses on the adjustment process that they go through in the United States especially within the language barrier hurdles. Santos is the archetype of that description and the story of "Sugar" effectively catches on to that. Santos is a bit of a curveball character with his diversified personality traits; he could be funny, sad, angry, immature, friendly, appreciative, selfish or loving. But overall Santos is more on the santo side of the character ball on how he fixates on succeeding at his craft to primarily send his mother money in order to raise funds to build her a new home and also build her a new table. "Santos" is surrounded by other screwball Dominican characters on the same minor league voyage as Sugar, which bring some relief to the sheer entertainment value of the film especially when it seemed that the movie was going to take a walk on the melodramatic side. The promising writer-director team of Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck, who also helmed the indie darling "Half Nelson", did run most of the bases of authentic film-making in pitching the "Sugar" story to audiences. However, I wished they would of have used the "cutter" more when it came to the creepy scenes of Sugar's admiration to the granddaughter of the Iowan family he was staying with. I am not going to sugarcoat this: Algenis Perez Soto's performance as Sugar was sporadically amateurish, but being his first acting performance I must state that he has mucho potential to make a mound of money in the thespian field. "Sugar" is set first in the Dominican Republic, then in Iowa, and lastly in New York. Even though the New York act plays a critical factor in the film's narrative climax, it felt a bit too stretched out. Nevertheless, I do recommend "Sugar" and do feel that you should not be "Sugar" free in your movie watching experience. **** Good
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