My Review of 'The Natural'
An old baseball movie that I only knew about from 'The Simpsons.' I finally got to watch it.
I heard of The Natural when I was younger but never got the chance to watch it. All I remembered about it was that there was this kid that made a baseball bat from a tree that was hit by lightning. I also remembered The Simpsons doing a parody of the movie in one of their episodes. All that to say, I didn't know too much about the movie except that it was a baseball movie.
The Natural stars Robert Redford as the main character Roy Hobbs. Roy is a country boy. His father raised him to love baseball. He lived a simple life where all he cared about was baseball, and he became really good at it. When he came of age, he left his farm to try out for the major leagues. He meets up with some people that can make him into a star, and he has the talent to become a great star. Unfortunately a major incident happens that forces him out of baseball. 16 years later, we see him try to make a comeback into baseball. He becomes the oldest rookie for the major leagues but no one knows much about him.
I guess that's the whole premise of the movie. There's a slew of events that make me wonder if some of the story was based on true events in real life. There weren't any disclaimers, so I guess it wasn't based on a true story, but this doesn't mean that the author wasn't inspired by true life events.
I like how the story was based in the 1930s. It's got this sense of honor and respect that not a lot of characters have in movies nowadays. Roy somewhat has the same sense of respect as you see in movies like The Godfather. It's nice to see a character not motivated by money but by his relationship with others and for the love of the game.
The movie also makes references to real life characters and teams. A character earlier in the movie that resembles Babe Ruth is called the Whammer, but it's pretty obvious who they're trying to resemble.
It's a movie that was made in the 1980s, so you'll see a lot of older stars in their youth such as Robert Redford, Glenn Close, Robert Duvall, and Kim Basinger to name a few. There's a whole slew of stars in this movie. I have to say that I wasn't too impressed with Robert Redford's portrayal of Roy. The acting seemed wooden and unemotional. Maybe that was the style of acting back in the day. I wasn't really drawn to his character.
Although, it's not totally the actors to blame for the wooden acting. Some of the dialogue was a little weird. There were plenty of moments when characters would just end conversations by saying they had to leave. It was a convenient way of exiting the scene, but it seemed totally off. I didn't live in the 1930s, so I'm not sure if this was an accurate portrayal of how people talked to one another, but to me it seemed very unnatural.
Still the movie was pretty entertaining. There's a part at the end of the movie that was pretty cool because they had a few scenes earlier in the movie that led up to that big scene. I think a lot of people will really like it, but a few people will find it super cheesy.
Overall, I really enjoyed the movie despite the fact some of the acting was pretty wooden and the dialogue was kind of wacky. There's a main story that was pretty interesting, but the pacing was a little off. It's a movie that you'll finish watching and wonder if any of the scenes were taken from real life. I'll have to give this movie a 7 out of 10. Tons of people will enjoy this movie, especially if you like baseball. There are better baseball movies out there, but this is a good one to check out if you've got nothing else to watch.