5.9/10
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48 user 12 critic

Mr. Baseball (1992)

Jack Elliot, once a great baseball player, is forced to play in Japan where his brash, egotistical ways cause friction with his new teammates and friends.

Director:

Fred Schepisi

Writers:

Theo Pelletier (story), John Junkerman (story) | 3 more credits »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tom Selleck ... Jack Elliot
Ken Takakura ... Uchiyama
Aya Takanashi ... Hiroko Uchiyama
Dennis Haysbert ... Max 'Hammer' Dubois
Toshi Shioya Toshi Shioya ... Yoji Nishimura
Kosuke Toyohara Kosuke Toyohara ... Toshi Yamashita
Toshizo Fujiwara Toshizo Fujiwara ... Ryoh Mukai
Mak Takano Mak Takano ... Shinji Igarashi
Kenji Morinaga Kenji Morinaga ... Hiroshi Kurosawa
Joh Nishimura Joh Nishimura ... Tomophiko Ohmie
Norihide Goto Norihide Goto ... Issei Itoi
Kensuke Toita Kensuke Toita ... Akito Yagi
Naoki Fuji Naoki Fuji ... Takuya Nishikawa
Takanobu Hozumi Takanobu Hozumi ... Hiroshi Nakamura
Leon Lee ... Lyle Massey
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Storyline

Although a one-time MVP for the New York Yankees, Jack Elliott is now on the down side of his baseball career. His batting average is low and one of his few claims to fame is that during the previous year, he led the team in 9th inning doubles in the month of August. With an up and coming slugger ready to replace him, he learns that he's been traded to the Chunichi Dragons of the Japanese Central baseball league. Elliott is set in his ways and quite inflexible, not only in accepting Japanese culture in general, but also with the way the baseball team is managed. When he meets his very pretty PR agent, Hiroko, he begins to gain a greater appreciation that he should accept his current situation. When he realizes her other connection to the team, his attitudes begin to change at an even greater pace Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He's the biggest thing to hit Japan since Godzilla! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sensuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Japan

Language:

English | Japanese

Release Date:

2 October 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Basebalista See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$40,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$20,883,046
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While preparing for this movie, Tom Selleck spent time with the Detroit Tigers during 1991 spring training. He was even brought into a game as a late inning pinch hitter, managing to foul off one pitch before striking out. See more »

Goofs

During one of the games, Itoi is the pitcher and is wearing uniform #11 when he throws a pick-off throw to Jack at first base. When the shot changes and Jack catches the ball at first base, Itoi is warming up in the background wearing #11. Itoi can't be warming up if he is already on the mound in the game. See more »

Quotes

[reporter asks a question]
Yoji Nishimura, Jack's Interpreter: She wants to know why you have chosen to play in Japan.
Jack Elliot: Let's just say I had a yen to play here.
Yoji Nishimura, Jack's Interpreter: [in Japanese] Mr. Elliot would gladly pay for honor of playing in Japan.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Heartwarming drama hiding within sports comedy "lite"
5 January 2002 | by David SpaldingSee all my reviews

MR. BASEBALL is a film of paradoxes. Written and filmed as a "light, sports comedy" it truly has a heartwarming core as human and universal as some of Capra's finest. At the plot level, you have the paradox of baseball, a fine old American game, as it is played in Japan - turned around, with American values cast off and Japanese values imprinted upon the game. (Some of the superficial "sports comedy" results from Jack's uncomprehending disbelief at how "basa-boru" is played in Japan.) You also have a lead character who's presented as an over-the-hill, aging baseball star, but who is actually quite immature - pro ball allowed him to postpone growing up. And you have a lead character who is rudely resistant to the changes in his life that are being forced upon him, refusing to accept the curveball that life has given him, in the midst of a new country, a new manager, a new team, and a new girlfriend, who have all welcomed him and try to accept him. Sound like heavy stuff? Not really. It's a charming "clash of cultures" comedy that takes place on the national, sports, romantic, and professional levels. But if you watch it sensitively enough, you will also find a great story about a man who has to abandon his immaturity and grow up way too late in life (causing some amount of personal pain), and finds success in places he never expected it. I love the story, but I also have great respect for Selleck's performance; he bares his tush (literally) to portray an ugly American, insulting people and throwing tantrums in public, then lets us inside this character to understand his dismay. It also doesn't hurt if you're a big fan of Takakura Ken like I am. MR. BASEBALL is a surprising "loss of innocence" tale.


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