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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Report Card----"42"

This is the other ennobling film dealing with racial intolerance that I'm reporting on this week.
Unlike the others, I thought "42" was magnificent on almost every level.
It deserved an Oscar nomination, at least.
And based on the way the voting went, it should have won.
I thought that just in terms of importance, it deserved more than the others of it's ilk.
Everyone, of every generation, knows what went on with slavery.
But we have to keep reminding kids, who think that baseball was always integrated, how important Jackie Robinson was.
And "42" did a wonderful job of that.  

On to the scoring: 

Is it interesting?

Thoroughly.  And I knew all about it.  Imagine those who didn't.
A+.

Compelling even?

Totally.
A+.

Is it controversial?

It cuts it's teeth on controversy.
A+.

Is it a story worth telling?

Vitally
A+.

Is it good storytelling?

Excellent.
A+.

Is it well written?

Very.  Much was based on things that were actually said.
A.

Is it well cast? Well played? 

Harrison Ford bought tremendous presence to Branch Rickey.  The kid playing Jackie Robinson wasn't as interesting as Robinson himself.
B+.

Well shot?

I'm separating this question for the first time.  The shooting and the art direction in particular were so magnificent that it must be discussed separately.  I don't know how they managed to do it, but they managed to recreate, brick by brick, all the old ballparks that have been torn down that Robinson played in.  And all the teams' uniforms were perfectly recreated.  I know that this only matters to a rabid baseball fan, but I am one.  Care was taken.
A+.

Is it too long? Too short?

Never an issue.
A.

Is it believable? Do you care about the characters?

Of course, and of course.  I was a little surprised that, even though his character appeared in the film, nothing was made of Red Barber's expressing his reluctance to continue calling the games for the Dodgers.  Barber was from the Deep South, and had later expressed his regrets about feeling that way. Thus, his function in the film was as a mere sportscaster.  It makes me wonder if a scene about this was shot, but ended up on the cutting room floor.
B.

Is it predictable? Does it surprise you?

Not really an issue.
No Grade.

Do you think about it after you've seen it?

Only about Red Barber, and how good Harrison Ford was.  Where was his nomination?
A.

Is it funny?

When it tries to be, which isn't often.
B.

Would it have been worth the thirteen bucks it would have cost to see it in the movies?

It depends on how big the TV screen in your house is, and whether you have HD.
B+.

Is it impressive ?

Totally.
A.

Overall grade: A.

This one was criminally ignored.
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My books ,"Show Runner" and it's sequel, "Show Runner Two", can be found at the Amazon Kindle Store.
Along with the newer ones, "The Man Is Dead", and "Report Cards".
You can search by typing in my name, Cindy Williams, Laverne and Shirley, The Odd Couple, or Happy Days.
Check them out.
You don't need a Kindle machine to download them.
Just get the free app from Kindle, and they can be downloaded to an IPhone, IPad, or Blackberry.
The paperbacks, "Mark Rothman's Essays" and my new novel, "I'm Not Garbo" are not
e-books. But they are available for people without Kindle.
I have many readings and signings lined up for those, and the thing about Kindle is you can't sign one. If you'd like one of the paperbacks, personally autographed, contact me at macchus999@aol.com.

And now, we've got my reading of my "Laverne and Shirley Movie" screenplay on YouTube.

*****

4 comments:

  1. Saw this in theaters and thought Harrison Ford's performance was magnificent. Considering how boring he is in real life , he was really acting up a storm.

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About Me

Hi. I am, according to my Wikipedia entry,(which I did not create) a noted television writer, playwright, screenwriter, and occasional actor. You can Google me or go to the IMDB to get my credits, and you can come here to get my opinions on things, which I'll try to express eloquently. Hopefully I'll succeed. You can also e-mail me at macchus999@aol.com. Perhaps my biggest claim to fame is being responsible, for about six months in 1975, while Head Writer for the "Happy Days" TV series, for Americans saying to each other "Sit on it."