Hillary T., Here….
This was another film I was unsure about. Of course I adore Jon Hamm, and his work on Mad Men is beyond incredible. And Lake Bell is a definite keeper after seeing her film “In A World” and her recurring role on ‘Children’s Hospital. But this movie could have been a hit or miss for me. Disney has made a great family movie with ‘Million Dollar Arm‘ that I wasn’t expecting to get sucked into and obviously invested in. You can tell it was passionately and lovingly made and disney quite possibly has a home-run on their hands.
Jon Hamm plays sports agent JB Bernstein and has a fancy house, a luxury car, and single life he values. He also has a tenant who lives in his garage apartment (Lake Bell), and has minimal interaction with her. He is uptight, uncomfortable and running out of options when it comes to signing clients and big sports deals.
Like Moby Dick, he is looking for fame in the form of a white whale. He and his business partner (played by Aasif Mandvi) are going broke and need a big idea fast. While flipping through channels between baseball and cricket in India (an untapped market), the two decide to go to India and scout the country for possibilities for the next big sport’s star. They have one year to find two men, train them, and make them ready for a talent scout.
This is where the comedy starts. JB has to adapt to whole new way of life and meets a guy named Amit (Pitobash Tripathy), who wants to coach baseball. Amit becomes JB’s guide throughout his travels in India to finding the young men with the “Million Dollar Arm.” Here is where we meet the baseball scout played by the amazing Alan Arkin.
This is a small role, but he savors in the role and is always a pleasure on-screen. It is also where we meet Rinku (Suraj Sharma) and Dinesh (Madhur Mittal), who are the two men who are the finalists for a contest that Bernstein has set up and they all head back to the U.S. to compete for the scouts.
Everyone turns in a solid performance here. There are a few plot holes and a few of those famous Disney story lines where our characters finally make that big change and things seem to work out in the end, but hey, it’s Disney. ‘Million Dollar Arm‘ is fun for the entire family and is a great addition to the sport’s genre of film.
4 out of 5 STARS
– Hillary T.