A Wonderful Little League story
Artist & Author | Near Mt. Baker, WA | 01/02/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This movie works for families interested in movies depicting traditional family values because Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee, as the grandparents, show so much love for each other, their orphaned grandson, and others. Young Jason has a double role - on one hand he is the catalyst that helps their grandson get past his grieving; on the other, he reminds Mack of an incident predicated on racism but in reality was just plain bullying.
[It also helped (for me, as a childhood fan of the 1950's Chicago cubs) that the great Ernie Banks was Mack's old friend. All the boys on our old Little League team dreamed of playing baseball like Mr. Banks!]
This is a wonderful family movie about baseball, boys, facing the past, sticking with one's "gut feeling" and learning the facts, consideration (and the lack of it for some) for other people's feelings, history of racism and for learning some baseball history. If you have Little League age boys or girls, you can safely watch this movie without fear of violating any traditional family values."
UNRAVELING A MYSTERY
Bonita L. Davis | 03/28/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Jason is an adolescent filled with dreams. When cut from his team because of his lack of skills and offered a chance to play on another one, Jason goes all out to prove himself. The man who is the key to his dream is a Black janitor by the name of Mack Henry, who knows a few things about baseball.
Mack Henry is far more than a janitor. His knowledge of the game and stories about the Negro League opens up a new world for the young white boy. His obsession with the game leads him to find out about a player of the Negro Leagues called Buck McHenry. Are Buck and Mack the same person? Jason is convinced that they are and sets out to prove it. This sentimental tale introduces us to the players of the Negro League and highlights the contributions of those men who never had the opportunity to play the majors. You learn about their hardships and dangers they faced. You will see why Buck disappeared after three years of playing never to be seen again.
What makes this picture interesting is the dynamics of a boy learning that it takes more than dreams to become a baseball player. It takes hard work. The video also shows how the media will invade a person's privacy for a good story regardless of the harm that it might cause. Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee star in this film as a couple who have loved one another for years but sorrow and a secret has entered their lives. Jason's curiousity brings shakes these things lose and Mack Henry's life will never be the same again."
Great idea, but...
Bonita L. Davis | 07/12/2004
(1 out of 5 stars)
"The idea - to promote awareness of the Negro League and what the players went through prior to baseball's integration - was a wonderful one. However, the writing and the acting make the story seem far less than real. The characters do not behave in any way as their real life counterparts would. While kids ages 7 - 12 will likely enjoy this after-school-special type of movie, adults will likely find it difficult to watch."