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The Rookie
Description: Small town science teacher and baseball coach tries to motivate his team to a winning season. Makes a bet that he'll try out for the big leagues if they win a district championship. Guess what happens? Heartwarming parable about reaching for your dreams.

I'm not exactly a baseball fan and the last movie about baseball that I actually liked was Bull Durham. This movie has something in common with that one, in that it also uses baseball as a metaphor instead of obsessing on the game itself. 

In The Rookie, Dennis Quaid plays Jimmy Morris, a man who long ago gave up his dreams of professional ball to be a science teacher, but it's clear his dream still haunts him. He starts throwing again, even though doctors told him he'd never be able to. His team gets wind of it and the infamous bet occurs. You know exactly how this will play out. Jimmy is a good coach, the kids are dedicated, and the team wins. Jimmy tries out for the big leagues again (actually he starts out in the minors and goes through some tough times) and eventually makes it. 

The best parts of this movie are Jimmy interacting with his family. His kids, his wife, and his father all see his attempt to recapture his dream differently. His son sees a hero. His wife doesn't want him hurt. His father replays painful scenes of discouragement - telling him to be realistic and keep his job.

There are treacly bits and some very funny bits (especially at the tryouts with three kids including one who needs diaper changes). If you're in the mood for a heartwarming tale with a little bit of brains, this movie's for you.

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