The video: The Blind Side, based on Michael Lewis' book about a white southern family that adopts a gifted black athlete, grossed more than $250 million at the box office, helped revive Sandra Bullock's career, and was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. Could the film adaptation of another Lewis book, Moneyball — about the Oakland Athletics' use of computer analysis to resuscitate a flailing baseball team — be another cinematic "home run"? The official trailer for the movie, which stars Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, and Phillip Seymour Hoffman, was released this week. (Watch the trailer below.) Aaron Sorkin, the award-winning writer of The West Wing and The Social Network, penned the film's script, which follows general manager Billy Beane as he shrugs off the advice of old-school baseball scouts who follow their gut, instead applying mathematical analysis to player recruitment and team building — with success that revolutionizes Major League Baseball.
The reaction: This film has all the elements needed for critical success, says Dashiell Bennett at Business Insider. "Sounds like Oscar to me." Well, the trailer, with its cool portrayal of a classic sports underdog story, is "a little Oceans 11" and "a lot Friday Night Lights," says Russ Fischer at Slash Film. But I guess that's a good thing. Still, a lot of what's shown in the trailer "seems awfully silly," says Aaron Gleeman at NBC Sports. Especially if you're a smart baseball fan who's well-versed in this statistics-heavy approach to the game. See for yourself:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Yes, Republicans can impeach President Obama
- The mystery behind China's aggressive push into space
- What religious traditionalists can teach us about sex
- Here's the schedule very successful people follow every day
- Why Texas' abortion rates aren't falling as quickly as everyone expected
- The 5 best and worst states for a well-lived life
- Why all drugs should be legal. (Yes, even heroin.)
- 7 ideas from ancient thinkers that will improve your modern life
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- The NFL is terrified of the culture war
Subscribe to the Week