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BULL DURHAM (director/writer: Ron Shelton; cinematographer: Bobby Byrne; editors: Robert Leighton/Adam Weiss; music: Michael Convertino; cast: Kevin Costner (Crash Davis), Susan Sarandon (Annie Savoy), Trey Wilson (Skip), Tim Robbins (Nuke LaLoosh), Robert Wuhl (Larry), Danny Gans (Deke), William O’Leary (Jimmy), Jenny Robertson (Millie), David Neidorf (Bobby), Max Patkin (Himself); Runtime: 108; MPAA Rating: R; producers: Thom Mount/Mark Burg; Orion; 1988)
Does an impressive job picking up the mundane world of bush league baseball in spirit.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

A sassy romantic comedy about the Class A ‘Durham Bulls’ of North Carolina, a losing minor league baseball team. Baseball is taken as a metaphor for family. It is one of the better baseball flicks, and would be much better without its ego-centric star Kevin Costner and, perhaps, with a more experienced director than the fledgling writer and helmer Ron Shelton (“Tin Cup”/”Cobb”/”White Men Can’t Jump”). Nevertheless Shelton provides authenticity. He spent 5 years playing in the minors for a Baltimore Orioles farm team.

The start of the season gets off to a jolt for the Bulls when the veteran catcher Kevin Costner, from another A team in the organization, knocks out Tim Robbins, the talented but dim-witted cocky bonus-baby pitcher he’s supposed to train for the big leagues. Adding to the comical circumstances is community college English Lit instructor and dedicated fan, Susan Sarandon, informing both players she’s undecided which of them to take to bed for the season. She’s the kind of fan who every season chooses a different player to bestow her favors on.

As far as I’m concerned, it does an impressive job picking up the mundane world of bush league baseball in spirit and providing laughs through its colorful characters. It should please either the sports fans or those not interested in sports.


Dennis Schwartz: “Ozus’ World Movie Reviews”