Moneyball DVD Review
By Kam Williams
Billy Beane Bio-Pic Released on DVDBrad Pitt has positioned himself as a serious contender for an Academy Award by virtue of his engaging performance in this delightful bio-pic. For he is simply sensational as Billy Beane here, in an emotionally-uplifting, David vs. Goliath saga revolving around the amazing run of the Oakland Athletics during the 2002 season.
The iconoclastic, A's General Manager revolutionized baseball that year by fielding a team of lowly-touted underdogs who somehow managed to beat the odds by overachieving and reaching the playoffs. But Billy knew their feat was no fluke since there had been a mathematical method to his madness.
And as a small market team with modest revenues, the A's simply couldn't afford to match the mega-salaries being offered by perennial World Series contenders like the Yankees, Dodgers and Red Sox. So, on the advice of his nerdy, young assistant, Peter Brand (Jonah Hill), an Ivy-educated economist he'd hired away from the Cleveland Indians, Beane began to employ a state-of-the-art system of computer analysis known as Sabermetrics.
However, he still had a hard time selling the strategy to his skeptical, hard-boiled manager, Art Howe (Philip Seymour Hoffman), who initially refused to cooperate with what he considered a patently ridiculous innovation. But Howe would grudgingly embrace the rag-tag assortment of misfits he was handed, and eventually lead the team to victory.
Directed by Bennett Miller, Moneyball was adapted by Academy Award-winner Aaron Sorkin (for The Social Network), a gifted storyteller with a knack for both inspired dialogue and compelling character development. He deserves accolades for the way in which he humanizes his protagonist by having Billy exhibit a sincere regret over his failed marriage and the toll the divorce is taking on his emotionally-distant, 12 year-old daughter, Casey (Kerris Dorsey).
Consequently, we care as much about the resolution of the strained father-daughter relationship as about the outcome of Oakland's historic baseball season. How long can the A's computer-assisted miracle season last? Will Billy and Casey ever reconcile?
A tender reminder that the heart sometimes still matters even if we now live in a technology-driven, Digital Age where machines lead and humans follow.
Excellent (4 stars)
Rated PG-13 for profanity.
Running time: 133 minutes
Distributor: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Extras: Deleted scenes; blooper; Billy Beane: Re-Inventing the Game; Moneyball: Playing the Game; Drafting the Team; Adapting Moneyball; and preview trailer.
To see a trailer for Moneyball, visit:
To order a copy of the Moneyball Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack, visit:
B0060ZJ74OKam Williams is a syndicated film and book critic who writes for 100+ publications. He is a member of the New York Film Critics Online, the African-American Film Critics Association, and the NAACP Image Awards Nominating Committee. Contact him through NewsBlaze.
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