MILLION DOLLAR ARM

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Director: Craig Gillespie
Writer: Thomas McCarthy
Cast: Jon Hamm, Lake Bell, Aasif Mandvi, Bill Paxton, Alan Arkin and Pitobash
Studio: Disney

“Million Dollar Arm” will sneak up on you. While it’s easy to dismiss the film as something that would’ve been a TV movie in other decade, there’s an honesty to making a general audience movie. Playing loosely with real facts, we watch as a washed up Sports agent decides to travel the world to find sports talent. It’s when he arrives in India that he makes the connection. If Indians can raise sports stars to pitch cricket balls, then why can’t throw a fastball? Cut to a local reality show dubbed Million Dollar Arm and a new age of Western imperialism begins in the land of “The Jungle Book”.

Jon Hamm is so close to blowing up in movies. But, he’s never going to do it in easy roles like this. Poor Lake Bell looks so annoyed with having to play the girl next door, that you can see her working out how few people bothered to watch “In a World”. This is an era where many things are possible and new markets are opening up for the cinema. Still, the more doors open, the more things stay the same. The film is going to get killed by Godzilla, but at least Disney had the confidence to offer up something kinda different.

While the real life sports angle is starting to become cliché at Disney, they’re still doing a decent job at it. That being said, I hope this film gets them to push away from the angle for awhile. Hell, I wouldn’t mind seeing a few live-action literary adaptions. They were good at that for a bit. The sports field is mined out and no fattie wants to go watch people being athletic. It’s time to try something else for awhile, Disney. You did OK here, not great.

RELEASE DATE: 05/16/2014

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