The Grind

Moneyball (Bennett Miller, 2011)

As most of sports cinema goes, there must be a unique facet or achievement created by a certain team or player for the film to be of any interest to society. Moneyball is remarkable because of the pain and effort that the characters goes through simply for small victories. Peter Brand gets his theory of econometrics put to the test, Billy Beane finally has a winning team, and the Oakland Athletics are relevant in baseball; however none of these things come easily and in the end, don’t amount to much in the grand sceheme of baseball… at least, not to the un-soulful eye. Nobody ends up being over-glorified or put on a pedestal, and the reverberations of the new style of management administered by the A’s are left as a small but resounding footnote at the end. The crux of the story, as director Bennet Miller quite well knows, should be the struggle and the sweat, blood and tears that go into a an achievement. The payoff is essentially the boring part because it is a momentary thing and what pleasure it does deliver cannot be captured on film with any sort of substance… it is a purely intangible, invisible experience. Thus, Bennet Miller’s biggest achievement here is that, like in his debut Capote, he leaves the melodrama and decorations to history and gives us the juicy details to what eventually led up to a media sensation.


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