...now see the movie!
September 30, 2011 12:02 PM   Subscribe

Should I go see Moneyball?

I don't go out to see many movies, although I attend a lot of them when my town has its annual film festival. I seem to dislike what is being sent to mainstream movie houses.
(A co-worker said that I hate movies but like films, and that sounded about right to me.)
I also have no interest in baseball, and have not for 50 years. But I really liked Moneyball, by Michael Lewis. So is there any point to go see the movie if you've read the book and aren't into movies or baseball? This was prompted by yesterday's post, and I read and liked Bunny Ultramod's review, but it was more about Brad Pitt than the movie itself. The trailer kind of sucked me in, but that's what it's supposed to do.
Will I want my $10 back?
posted by MtDewd to Media & Arts (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Yes, you will, by Sherlockian deduction. First, you don't like movies, second, you clearly don't care about Brad Pitt, and third, you liked the book, and so I'd bet dollars to donuts that you'll be irritated by what became of the "true" story to make a movie. (Mostly in terms of how much, obviously, must be left out.) Spare yourself. Go to a really good movie instead and surprise yourself!
posted by RJ Reynolds at 12:12 PM on September 30, 2011 [3 favorites]

Based on your criteria of hating movies but liking films, and that there is oddly oscar talk about Moneyball - this qualifies as a film about a mainstream topic. While you may not appreciate the baseball aspects of the film, you should base your enjoyment on the character development and quality of dialog (possibly cinematography too). So, if you watch it, and you don't feel compelled by the characters, demand your $10 back.

- but it sounds to me like you should see the film.
posted by Nanukthedog at 12:17 PM on September 30, 2011

There's at least two great scenes that aren't in the trailer. The family bit with his daughter, eh, who cares. But I would see it because I am still thinking about those two scenes.
posted by GaelFC at 12:22 PM on September 30, 2011

I don't think you should see it. I loved the book, and I also enjoy movies and baseball, but I found the movie very slow, especially since I already knew (in a general sense) what was going to happen.
posted by cider at 12:25 PM on September 30, 2011

If you liked the book for its keen business analysis and Lewis's detours into obscure statistical history, you will find the movie boring. It's like Sabermetrics For Dummies. Actually, it's more like the Cliff's Notes to Sabermetrics For Dummies.

If you liked the book for its ridiculous anecdotes about crazy tantrum-throwing Billy Beane, you will loooooooooooove the movie.

Do with that information what you will.
posted by Snarl Furillo at 12:30 PM on September 30, 2011 [2 favorites]

Take your own plate of beans. Why not? Everyone needs to do something out of character once in a while, and you might enjoy yourself. If you really hate it, then you can get satisfaction out of telling everyone how much better the book was and why.
posted by Ideefixe at 12:34 PM on September 30, 2011 [2 favorites]

If you're in doubt, perhaps a compromise would be to wait until it's available at the public library or via Netflix or whatever. I mean, it's not like it's Lawrence of Arabia or something, so I'm not sure you'd gain much by seeing it in a theater on a big screen.

That way, rather than the worst-case scenario being you wanting your ten dollars back, it'll instead be you wanting the two hours of your life back.
posted by box at 12:40 PM on September 30, 2011 [1 favorite]

Do you dare to eat a peach? It's getting very good reviews. If you are comfortable taking a slight risk that your 2 hours and 10 bucks could have been spent on a better experience, go see it.
posted by theora55 at 1:40 PM on September 30, 2011 [1 favorite]

I guess I don't care about Brad Pitt, but I liked him in Thelma & Louise and I just got A River Runs Through It out of the library last week. (Another book I liked, and I liked the movie, too. The movie gave me a better picture of Montana than the book did.) Not sure I've seen him in anything more recent.
Just because there's odd Oscar talk doesn't make it necessarily bad. I would ask why the movie was made. If the answer leans toward the artistic or intellectual or emotional side of things, that's what I might be interested in. If the answer is 'I want to make a shitload of money', then I try to stay away.
Snarl Furillo- I know I liked the keen business analysis, etc., but I think I liked the other stuff too.

I think the things that appealed to me in the trailer were the ballpark scenes. I know I said I don't care about baseball, but that green field under lights is stunning (at least in person). That would probably be better on the big screen.
posted by MtDewd at 1:50 PM on September 30, 2011

I really enjoyed watching the baseball scenes, but I'm a baseball person. I probably see 2-3 movies per year. Mostly I decided to see this movie because I love Robert Redford.
posted by blurker at 2:00 PM on September 30, 2011

I liked it, but haven't read the book. I am fussy about films, and this one was fine. Not horribly cliched, acting generally good, lots of quiet moments where no one is speaking- it's not a yammering film. FWIW I found it visually appealing- lots of behind the scenes of the sort of worn Coliseum and Oakland's waterfront, which contrasted nicely with scenes of lush Wrigley Field and his ex-wife's fancy new home.

I do live in Oakland and used to be very enthusiastic about baseball. We saw it opening weekend with other Oaklanders and A's fans in the theatre who clapped during exciting moments, which always makes movies more fun for me. So I may be biased. We haven't gone to the movies in many months- I think the last we saw was... um... True Grit?

My boyfriend read the book, and still enjoyed the movie, though liberties were taken. He doesn't care at all about baseball.
posted by oneirodynia at 2:35 PM on September 30, 2011

My friend who is a lit professor said it did not need to be seen on the big screen, but that he didn't dislike it.
posted by mecran01 at 3:05 PM on September 30, 2011

Note that you can usually walk out after about ten minutes and get a full refund. If they ask for a reason (and I've never been asked), just hold up your cell and mumble something about getting the call.
posted by Rash at 3:35 PM on September 30, 2011

My friend who is a lit professor said it did not need to be seen on the big screen,

Precisely the worst person to opine on a visual medium. Next time, ask someone who understands about pictures.
posted by Ideefixe at 6:43 PM on September 30, 2011

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