Excerpt: It's 1947 and post-war America is in a state of flux, and nothing shows that more than baseball, the microcosm of America at the time. A horde of professional baseball players have returned from the shores of Europe and not just in the Major League. Players in the Negro Leagues also returned, bringing with them some of the best players in the game—Satchel Page, Josh Gibson—all dreaming of a turn in the Show.
Excerpt: Trying too hard when so little extra effort was necessary, 42 elevates the story of Jackie Robinson to that of cornball legend rather than just honoring his legitimately uplifting, heroic saga by telling it straight. Working with perhaps the most inspiring of all 20th-century sports tales, writer-director Brian Helgeland opts for overblown melodramatics at every available turn, thereby reducing the enterprise—about Robinson's successful efforts to become Major League...
Excerpt: There are things we all take for granted and I think one of the most obvious ones are professional athletes. At any given point in time at any given time of day, it’s easy to find some sport that’s on TV. I’m willing to bet that no one really watches a sport and thinks of the color of the athlete’s skin and if they do, I’m sure it’s not dwelled on for too long.
Excerpt: Jackie Robinson. The guy's kind of a big deal. 42 details the legend's rise through the majors and the circumstances surrounding his smashing of the baseball color barrier. With Chadwick Boseman as Robinson and Harrison Ford ( Raiders of the Lost Ark ) as Brooklyn Dodgers owner Branch Rickey anchoring the proceedings, writer/director Brian Helgeland's biopic delivers the ups and downs of one of the most turbulent, history-making events in the American experience.
Summary: Late in the game, Rickey tells Robinson about a white boy he saw emulating Jackie’s batting stance. It’s a sly point reminding the audience how Robinson’s influence far predated everyone trying to dunk like one Mike or moonwalk like another in the ‘80s. A lot of us may know the Jackie Robinson story, but 42 works because it brings the man’s history-making journey to vivid life.
Conclusion: 42 is more or less what you expect it to be: a sharply-produced, widely appealing dramatization of Jackie Robinson's ever-inspirational story. At times, it relies too heavily on invention as it paints its characters in broad strokes.
Conclusion: Warner Bros delivers a pretty much flawless presentation of 42 . The audio and video boast the highest quality. Fans of the film will be very please and definitely must own it. The special features leave much to be desired, but are good enough to be Cliff’s Notes to an ideal set of documentaries. While I found the film to be stereotypical and sort of taking an easier route, it’s not a bad one. 42 is meant as a crowd pleaser for general audiences reaching all ages.
Summary: What would baseball be without Bob Gibson's electric fastball, without Hank Aaron's hammer, without Ricky Henderson's record base stealing speed, without Joe Carter's World Series walk-off home run, without Ken Griffey, Jr.'s sweet left-handed swing, without Andrew McCutchen's infectious personality leading the Pittsburgh Pirates out of 20 years in baseball hell?
Conclusion: The key towards gauging an individual's appreciation of yet another retelling of a historical figure may very well lie on how much familiarity the individual has with said figure before seeing the movie. For those not familiar with it, it is an average retelling, but with little else going for it. Technically the disc is superb and flat out sucks for bonus material, so I would take this as more of a rental (and a loose history lesson) than anything else.