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With: Dennis Quaid, Rachel Griffiths, Jay Hernandez, Brian Cox
Written by: Mike Rich
Directed by: John Lee Hancock
MPAA Rating: G
Running Time: 128
Date: 03/26/2002

The Rookie (2002)

3 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Grand Slam

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

One of my all-time favorite baseball movie is The Rookie, starring Dennis Quaid in a perfect, deeply-felt performance as Jim Morris, a real-life pitcher with a hurricane fastball who belatedly made his way to the big leagues while in his mid-30s, playing just a few games for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 1999 and 2000. Though the movie has all the warning signs of sappy Disney mush, like a 'G' rating, and a 128-minute running time, the movie delicately avoids pitfalls and presents a strikingly lean and touching baseball story. Rachel Griffiths plays Jim's wife, and Brian Cox plays his father. Morris himself has a cameo as an umpire. Director Hancock had written the screenplays for Clint Eastwood's films A Perfect World and Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.

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