From the studio that brought you REMEMBER THE TITANS comes an inspirational film based on a true story. Jim Morris (Dennis Quaid), father, teacher, and high school coach, thought his dream was over. He'd had his shot playi... more »ng baseball, blew out his shoulder, and retired without ever making it to the big leagues. Then, in 1999, Coach Morris made a fateful bet with his perpetually losing team. If they won the district championship, Morris -- who threw a 98 mph fastball -- would try out for the majors. The team went from worst to first, and Jim, living up to his end of the bargain, threw caution to the wind and was on the road to becoming the oldest rookie in the major leagues. This heartfelt, uplifting story about not giving up on your dreams will have everyone cheering.« less
Jennifer D. (jennicat) from ST AUGUSTINE, FL Reviewed on 3/29/2014...
Wayne F. (WWIIpfc) from COLORADO SPGS, CO Reviewed on 1/27/2012...
If it weren't based on facts it would be hard to believe it wasn't pure fiction. Good acting. Enjoyable all the way through.
Aimee M. (AimeeM) Reviewed on 11/20/2008...
This movie is one of those "happy feel-good family" type movies. Nothing too exciting or awesome happens in it. (Unless you are easily excited by baseball) But if you are in the mood for a pure Disney-family movie, then it is worth the credit.
6 of 6 member(s) found this review helpful.
Chase after your dream
Jason Cheng | Catonsville, MD | 03/17/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Rookie can probably be considered as one of the great baseball classics in the likes of Field of Dreams and Bull Durham. Based on the true story of Jim Morris, this is a moving tale of a man who gets a second shot at a life long dream. Husband and a father of three, Morris is a teacher at Big Lake, Texas, who was playing in the minor league until he hurt his shoulder. Now he coaches the school's baseball team, and to inspire his players, he makes a deal with them. If they are able to win the district title, Morris agrees to try out for the major league.Director John Lee Hancock took his time with the character development, and it pays off as he gives us a tiny glimpse of Morris' childhood, of how much the game of baseball means to him. Dennis Quaid does an impressive job portraying Morris, I'd even say that he is totally perfect for the role, he is expressive, convincing and the acting just blows me away. Rachel Griffiths is a good complement as Morris' wife Lorri, supportive and a woman with incredible inner toughness, I also enjoyed her performance.The Rookie is a great family film, and it's immensely entertaining, I highly recommend it even if you're not a sports fan."
Dad's Watch this One with Your Kids
M. Swinney | Flower Mound, TX | 08/01/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Rookie is well-done. It doesn't have the feel of a traditional 'tug-on-your-heartstrings' family film. Instead, scenes are shot artistically, there is space between events, the director and writers gave the time and energy to tell the story and tell the story well, and emotional cues aren't yanked one time too many.
So, the story may be well-known to most but it's a phenomenal one to tell. Based on true life story of Jim Morris, he finds his way to Major League Baseball late in life as a relief pitcher for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays through the encouragement of his High School baseball team. What is really nice is the way the writers took the linear story and added an additional element of history to it. The story goes that in Big Springs, Texas some Nuns early on made a risky financial investment and prayed to the Saint of impossible dreams. Jim Morris's dream may seemed impossible but it is a source of encouragement and inspiration for the rest of us following our dreams.
Dennis Quaid is quite good in the role and plays Jim Morris faithfully. The setting is a key element in a seemingly run-down town and run-down baseball lot in West Texas...a place that dreams are carried through. It brings Jim Morris to his MLB debut at the Ballpark in Arlington which is good to see an authentic setting with real teams and real players instead of fictitious stand-ins.
Fight to keep a dry eye with"
A DREAM COME TRUE...
Lawyeraau | Balmoral Castle | 11/04/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is a heart warming, family friendly Disney movie that is based upon the true story of Texan Jim Morris, a baseball buff and minor leagues player has been, who becomes a high school teacher and baseball coach in a town where football is king. To motivate the lackluster baseball team he coaches, Jim strikes a deal with the team, which the the team initiates, knowing that their coach pitches a mean fast ball. Jim agrees that if they wins the district championship, he will try out for a major leagues baseball team. Much to his surprise and chagrin, the high school team he coaches goes on to take it all, and the thirty something Jim is forced to come to terms with his pledge. He does so, trying out for a major leagues baseball team, and finds himself living a dream come true. How can he not, with a fast ball clocking at 98 miles per hour?Dennis Quaid, with his shy, boyish charm and ingratiating toothy grin, is terrific in the role of Jim Morris. Rachel Griffiths is excellent as his down to earth, supportive wife. The rest of the cast also give very good performances. With its G rating, this film is suitable for all ages. It is an enjoyable, feel good, message movie.The DVD has a number of excellent bonus features, in additional to the usual deleted scenes segment. Baseball buffs and those who play the game will certainly enjoy the feature "Spring Training: Tips From the Pros". I especially enjoyed the featurette "The Inspirational Story of Jim Morris", in which Jim Morris himself tells in his own words the incredible journey that led to the realization of his dream."
Zinta Aistars | Portage, MI United States | 07/17/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm not much of a sports fan, and yet, quite a few of my favorite movies, interestingly enough, are sports movies. It was in watching Rookie that I realized why, as I listened to Jim Morris, played by Dennis Quaid, talk about his dreams. Sports movies are often less about sports and more about beating the odds to capture a dream held close to the heart. These are stories of hope, courage, determination, persistence, and a passion for doing what one is meant to do.
In line with this, sports movies are fequently devoid of special effects. No glitz. No flashy distraction. Just good down to earth stories with a lot of heart.
Rookie ranks with perhaps the top ten, if not top five, of my favorite movies. All the elements of a good plot are here. It doesn't hurt that the story is a true one, based on Jim Morris, as told in his own words, about how he came to play for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as an "old man."
The story begins with the boy, whose military, emotionally distant father is completely insensitive to his son's need for his attention and support. Boy loves baseball, with a passion, but father moves the family from town to town in pursuit of his military career, and he runs his family in a similarly military manner: cold, commanding, no arguments. From time to time, Jim makes an effort to solicit his father's approval, but it is not forthcoming.
The final military post brings the family to a small town in Texas, and it seems no one there cares about baseball. What the boy hasn't found in his father, he appears to find in the warm heart of a store owner who may not carry "baseball stuff" among his merchandise, but, seeing the crestfallen and lonely boy's face at this news, immediately brings out a catalog with promises of ordering all things baseball.
The story jumps to the adult Morris. He has a family, a wife who is the good woman behind the good man, two small children. His young son, Hunter, played by Angus T. Jones (today of "Two and a Half Men" fame), is something of a star in this movie, too, tugging at the heartstrings as he portrays how a son looks to his father to be his hero. Morris has become a high school science teacher who coaches the school baseball team, the Owls. His dreams, it seems, are long over. He had been on the brink of playing professional baseball, but injuries kept him on the sidelines, and he quit his dream before it was his. Morris's bitterness with his father's lack of support is still very much alive in the adult son, and there are great scenes between the man and his elderly father (played by Brian Cox), who with age has mellowed, has been divorced by his wife, lives alone, and still has no understanding about the sport, but at last senses he has not been much of a dad.
When the Owls do poorly on the field, coach Morris chides them on not playing with enough passion. He talks to them about not giving up. I cheered out loud, yes!, when his team called him on his own hypocrisy. They have seen him pitch, they know their coach not only still has his good arm, they know he still aches to follow his dream, even if he has lost courage. A deal is struck. They will win their tournament, but then their coach must go to the try-outs.
They win the tournament.
It's an absolutely wonderful scene as Morris struggles with his children while going to the try-outs. He hasn't had the guts to tell his wife about this "foolish" settling of a deal, and he ends up with a crying baby in a stroller, his small son cheering from the back of a pickup truck, while other athletes chuckle at the "old man" trying to pitch. Until he throws the pitch. He clocks 98 miles per hour.
And it's a beautiful thing, how Morris continues to struggle with doubts and is torn between following his old dream and being with the family he so loves. He goes back and forth more than once. He even asks his father for advice--who gives him advice he doesn't want to hear. At one point, his wife withholds her support. This is madness, and the family can't live on $600 a month while daddy plays ball. But when she realizes how much her son Hunter looks up to his father, how important it is to not only hear the good advice of a father, but to see that father as a role model who shows the courage and determination to face his fears and give his dream a try, well, she gives in. She not only gives in, she becomes her husband's biggest fan, except perhaps Hunter.
Morris ends up playing major league baseball. The hard pursuit comes to its most satisfying end. Yes, Hunter, your daddy is a hero. And Morris, pitching his first major league game, finally makes peace with his father. Who still may not understand baseball. But who is finally starting to understand about being a father.
Six stars. Do not miss."
Who says they cannot make good G-rated movies anymore?
Indiana Jeff Reynolds | Indianapolis, IN USA | 02/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"My wife and I watched this movie, and loved it. We watched it on Christmas day. This is an inspirational movie, and it is based on real life. I heard Jim Morris, who Dennis Quaid protrayed in this movie, interviewed on a national sports-talk program. One question was if the movie was as it really happened, or if they Hollywoodized it. Morris mentioned there were two things in the movie that were different from real life. One was that it took his experiences as a coach at two High Schools, and made it just one High School. The other is a scene where he throws a ball past a radar detector, to demonstrate his speed and his lack of knowledge of that speed. In other words, you have what really happened. The review in the Indianapolis Star said it followed two major movie cliches. Who cares? It was enjoyable to watch as an adult, and it is a movie that children can also enjoy. And we definitely need more movies like that! Back to the movie: very good supporting cast. Dennis Quaid is the only name I recognize. Jeff Reynolds"