42 (2013 USA)

 Ben Meyers’ rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì

42 concentrates so much on the problem of segregation that it loses some of the power of the Jackie Robinson story.  On the other hand, it more finely highlights the terrific, raw courage it takes to break new ground within a culture determined to stand its ground against plowing. It also shows why Jackie Robinson and his family were such terrific choices to break barriers. It’s great to see Harrison Ford in something more subtle than many of his previous works as he takes on the character of Branch Rickey, baseball executive. All in all, the film is a very good sports film that delivers at its own level.

Storyline

Jackie Robinson (Chadwick Boseman) is a hard hitting, hardworking, all-heart baseball player. Branch Rickey (Harrison Ford) recognizes and needs that talent. He relies on Jackie Robinson’s personal strength to take the abuse and still deliver as he breaks the all-white barrier at national level. Robinson goes from the Kansas City Monarchs to the Montreal Royals and then to the Brooklyn Dodgers. He becomes known as the first African American to play baseball for the Major Leagues.

Additional Thanks

Thank You to Director Brian Helgeland for directing efforts. Thank you to Executive Producers Jason Clark, Dick Cook, and Jon Jashni for making the film possible. Additional characters/cast include: Rachel Robinson (Nicole Beharie), Leo Durocher (Christopher Meloni), Dixie Walker (Ryan Merriman), Pee Wee Reese (Lucas Black), Wendell Smith (André Holland), Ben Chapman (Alan Tudyk), Ralph Branca (Hamish Linklater), Harold Parrott (T.R. Knight), Red Barber (John C. McGinley), Clyde Sukeforth (Toby Huss), Burt Shotton (Max Gail), Kirby Higbe (Brad Beyer), Mr. Brock (James Pickens, Jr.), and Joe Garagiola (Gino Anthony Pesi).

Buy a ticket? Yes? No? Maybe?

Yes. It is a good sports film that shows the courage that is needed by an entire family to break through outdated cultural patterns.

Ben Meyers

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