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With: Jackie Robinson, Ruby Dee, Minor Watson, Louise Beavers, Richard Lane, Harry Shannon, Ben Lessy, William 'Bill' Spaulding, Billy Wayne, Joel Fluellen, Bernie Hamilton, Kenny Washington, Pat Flaherty
Written by: Arthur Mann, Lawrence Taylor
Directed by: Alfred E. Green
MPAA Rating: NR
Running Time: 76
Date: 16/05/1950

The Jackie Robinson Story (1950)

3 Stars (out of 4)

Mr. 42

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Whereas The Pride of the Yankees had seemingly endless resources to tell its story, The Jackie Robinson Story (1950) tells a no less heroic tale, but on a tiny shoestring budget. Running almost half the length of Pride, this movie is forced to skimp on details of Jackie's life, not to mention that it has to settle for second-rate actors. All, that is, except for Robinson himself, who, playing himself, makes this film very much worth seeing. Asking the man to act out the hardships of his life once again so soon after he actually experienced them must have been tough. And, unlike Gary Cooper as Lou Gehrig, Robinson appears like he can actually play. Watching Robinson learn how to play first base after mastering second provides a fascinating insider look at the game's mechanics.

Ruby Dee (Do the Right Thing, American Gangster) plays Jackie's wife. The movie is available both in its original black-and-white, and colorized.

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