Flash Movie Review: 42

As soon as the movie was done, all I wanted to do was find someone who grew up in the 1940’s and plead with them to tell me all they knew about baseball player Jackie Robinson and the Brooklyn Dodgers. I wanted to hear about the times, the games and the attitudes that were prevalent among the people and players. Physical strength can be measured by endurance, power or weight. I think mental strength is actually tougher to achieve. Watching the mental strength Jackie Robinson had to have every single moment was infinitely more compelling than anything I have seen from the recently released action movies. Chadwick Boseman (Persons Unknown-TV, The Express) did a solid performance as Jackie Robinson. The verbal cruelty he endured was unbelievable. Harrison Ford (Cowboys & Aliens, Firewall) as Brooklyn Dodgers’ owner Branch Rickey, despite his extra padding, was okay; but I was still reminded that he was Harrison. His character, who came across larger than life, left me wanting to know more about Branch and his motivations. I just could not get over this man’s drive, determination and foresight by bringing in a black baseball player into an all white baseball world at a time when discrimination was the norm in society. The acting from Christopher Meloni (Oz-TV, Runaway Bride) as Leo Durocher, Nicole Beharie (Shame, The Express) as Rachel Robinson and Lucas Black (Jarhead, Get Low) as Pee Wee Reese was strong. Based on a true story, this inspirational dramatic film was geared to wring out the maximum from each heartfelt scene. The music was written to push at the viewer’s heart and I have to tell you I was teary eyed through over 1/2 of the movie. One did not have to have a knowledge of baseball to enjoy this movie; the story was more about civil rights. If for no other reason, it is worth seeing this drama just to see what the ugliness of ignorance looks like; not that we have stamped out ignorance yet. This movie did what I believe a movie should do: take the viewer away to a different time and place and experience the world through someone else’s eyes.

3 1/3 stars

About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on April 15, 2013, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. I read Jackie’s story some time ago. He was actually a better football player to many.
    Both he and Branch Rickey were men of faith. I once heard Herb Score, the old Cleveland Indians announcer say on the radio that after the first year if a pitcher threw inside, sometimes Jackie would bunt down the first base line forcing the pitcher to field it. Jackie would then run over him. It was a different game then as batters wore no head protection.

    I also remember reading Hank Aaron’s story “I had a hammer” and the one story that sticks in my mind is that in 1956, the year of my birth – Hank was sitting on the porch next to his dad saying “I want to be an airplane pilot”, his dad says “Ain’t no black pilots”, This went on to several other professions and then “I want to play ball in the big leagues”, ” Again the same answer, “Ain’t no black big leaguers.”

  2. Have you read Roger Kahn’s book The Boys of Summer?
    If you’re interested in Jackie Robinson and The Brooklyn Dodger’s I’d highly recommend it.

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