Gus is a baseball scout. The team he works for thinks he should retire. He asks them to let him do one more scouting job to prove himself. His friend, Pete, asks Gus's estranged daughter, Mickey, if she could go with him to make sure he's OK as his eyes are failing. The doctor tells Gus he should get his eyes treated but he insists on doing his scouting assignment, which takes him to North Carolina. Mickey decides to put her work on hold to go with him and she wants him to explain why he pushed her away. Whilst there he runs into Johnny, a scout from another team who was a promising player Gus once scouted. Johnny and Mickey take an interest in each other. Written by
During the film, Phillip Sanderson (Matthew Lillard) refers to the scouted prospect; Bo Gentry, as having "all five tools". The five tools in baseball refer to a players' ability to hit the ball for average, and for power, be talented defensively, have a good throwing arm, and have a considerable amount of speed. Judging on the few scenes where Bo runs, he's not exceptionally fast, and based on his large round stocky build, it is highly unlikely that he is very fast. Perhaps the writers inserted this quote in order to display Lillard's character of having ignorance to baseball and only basing his facts of a computer without watching him play, especially considering this is actually a very large part of the plot. See more »
(at around 31 mins) Mickey takes a hot frying pan from the stove and puts it into the sink.
Gus picks it up by the very hot rim of the pan to put it back. See more »
[at the toilet]
Okay, come on now. Come on, boy. Let's not take your sweet-ass time about this. Jesus. Okay, that's it... Ah, good. Don't laugh, I outlived you, you little bastard.
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I normally do not like movies about sports. I love sports; just not movies about sports. That being said, this film was not so much about baseball as it was about a father and daughter relationship. It also touched on how technology has taken over the human element of scouting for players. This film is the complete opposite of Money Ball, where technology actually helps in building a team. Gus Lobel (Clint Eastwood) is an aging scout for the Atlanta Braves who is struggling with his eyesight and the front office has doubts about whether or not he is still up to the job of spotting up and coming talent. Because of this affliction, Gus is a grumpy old man which actually adds a lot of humor to the film. His character kind of reminded me of the character that Eastwood played in Grand Torino. His daughter Mickey (Amy Adams) discovers that her father is having difficulty, reluctantly takes on the roll of caregiver and follows her father on his scouting adventure. Incidentally, she knows more about baseball than probably anyone else in this film. Johnny Flanagan (Justin Timberlake) is an aspiring sports announcer who was scouted by Gus years ago. The relationship that develops between Mickey (named for Mickey Mantle) and Johnny is fun to watch and provides some insight to Mickey's reluctance to develop a serious relationship with any man. Pete Klein (John Goodman) plays the mediator role that brings Mickey and Gus together. I really liked his unyielding devotion and trust to Gus. It was also good to once again see Scott Eastwood (Billy Clark) act alongside his father. They have acted together in several films, and it was good to see them spending some family time together. I think that the entire cast definitely made this film better and I am sure that it will draw young viewers to the theater. I do not think that this film was utterly brilliant, but it was thoroughly entertaining. There were aspects of the film that were totally predictable, but I looked forward to seeing it play out. Director Robert Lorenz may not have hit it out of the park (like he did with Million Dollar Baby), but I think that it is a definite triple play. I recommend that you do not sit on the bench and go out and see this film. I give this film a green light.
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