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For Love of the Game (1999)

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A washed up pitcher flashes through his career.

Director:

Sam Raimi

Writers:

Michael Shaara (novel), Dana Stevens (screenplay)
7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Costner ... Billy Chapel
Kelly Preston ... Jane Aubrey
John C. Reilly ... Gus Sinski
Jena Malone ... Heather Aubrey
Brian Cox ... Gary Wheeler
Addie Daddio Addie Daddio ... Waitress
J.K. Simmons ... Frank Perry (as JK Simmons)
Vin Scully ... Himself
Steve Lyons ... Himself
Carmine Giovinazzo ... Ken Strout (as Carmine D. Giovinazzo)
Bill E. Rogers ... Davis Birch (as Bill Rogers)
Hugh Ross Hugh Ross ... Mike Udall
Domenick Lombardozzi ... Tow Truck Driver
Arnetia Walker ... Airport Bartender
Larry Joshua ... 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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Universal

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 September 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

For the Love of the Game See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,041,685, 19 September 1999, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$35,168,395, 28 November 1999
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the Fox Sports graphic displayed at the beginning of the game, Billy Chapel's stats for the year (coming into the game) are as follows: 8 Wins, 11 Losses, 30 Games Played, 30 Games Started, 2 Complete Games, 1 Shutout (Meaning in one other game he pitched a complete game - which doesn't have to be a full 9 Innings - and allowed an opposing run), 211 Innings Pitched, 98 Walks Allowed, and 111 Strike Outs. See more »

Goofs

Before the last game Vin Scully talks about the Yankees having the chance to clinch the "Pennant" on the next to last day of the season. The pennant goes to the champion of the American League. In order to win the Pennant you have to win a divisional playoff, then the American League Championship Series. You cannot win a pennant in the regular season. See more »

Quotes

Billy Chapel: God, I always said I would never bother you about baseball, Lord knows you have bigger things to worry about. But if you could make this pain in my shoulder stop for ten minutes, I would really appreciate it.
Billy Chapel: Clear the Mechanism.
[nothing happens; it doesn't work]
Billy Chapel: Clear the Mechanism.
[it still doesn't work]
Billy Chapel: [nodding] All right; all right.
See more »

Alternate Versions

A full frontal nude shot of Kevin Costner had to be cut at Universal's request to secure a PG-13 rating. See more »

Connections

Featured in Stuart Little 2 (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

High Hopes
Written by Jimmy Van Heusen and Sammy Cahn
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Even If You Hate Baseball -- and Kevin Costner -- This Movie Still Rocks!
12 October 2006 | by Dan1863SicklesSee 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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