Welcome back from spring break, kiddies! I don’t know about you, but the ol’ Biffster did absolutely nothing except for watch videos all week long. That’s right, spring break went according to plan, with me watching a bunch of dollar rentals while surviving on a strict diet of Hot Pockets and Hamm’s. Hooray for me! Well, spring brings many things to this wonderful world of ours, including the aforementioned break and the spring term of which you are currently enrolled. Spring is the time when a young man’s heart turns to fancy (I think). April brings its showers and May brings its flowers while the animals of the world are all deflowering each other.
Springtime also means its time for daylight savings again, so don’t get too attached to that sleeping schedule that you’ve finally gotten used to. More important than all of these things combined, however, is the beginning of another baseball season. Yes, that special time of the year when thousands of millionaires dust off the shoes of their endorsement contracts and begin the holdout process for more money. Yes, it truly is America’s pastime, and what better way to celebrate it than by watching movies about it. Isn’t this exciting?!
Play ball! First up is the quintessential baseball movie, The “Citizen Kane” of baseball movies, if you will. Ask any ballplayer what the best baseball movie ever is and they’ll tell you it’s “Hardball” starring Keanu Reeves. Just kidding! It’s “Major League,” silly! This masterpiece stars Tom Berenger, Charlie Sheen, Wesley Snipes and Corbin Bernsen while he still had an ounce of dignity.
Heck, even “Mr. Baseball” himself, Bob Uecker, took time out of his busy “Mr. Belvedere” schedule to make an appearance.
Incredibly predictable, this 1989 gem relies on comedy to get by, and get by it does. The Cleveland Indians are in last place and they have to win their division in order to keep their time. Can the rag-tag group of washed-up stars and bumbling rookies come together as a team and learn a few life lessons along the way? Does this sound like “Necessary Roughness”? It sure does. Anyways, lookout for Charlie Sheen’s hairdo, it’s a doozy. Don’t watch the sequels, they’re crap.
Batter up! Here is where Biff’s bragging rights come in since he saw our next baseball selection in the theater. That’s right, I was front row center for 1996’s “Ed.” This Matt LeBlanc mistake is the lovable tale of a baseball player who is forced to live with a baseball playing monkey who enjoys farting and burping almost as much as he enjoys playing the hot corner (third base for all the non-geeks) for his crappy Triple-A team. Sounds crappy, right? Well it gets crappier: It’s not even a real monkey! It’s a guy in a monkey suit! Lame lame lame! I left 45 minutes into this embarrassment and attempted for the last time to sneak into “Hellraiser 4: Bloodline” with no success. Matt LeBlanc should punch his agent in the kidneys.
Da na na na na na, Charge! Another of Biff’s favorite baseball films is “A League of Their Own”. Rosie, Madonna, Geena Davis and Tank Girl start playing baseball during World War II to take the place of the men who are too busy fighting Nazis. Tom Hanks is surprisingly good as a drunk, and Biff is surprised that he has somehow seen this movie, like, 12 times. Who knew?
Take me out to the ball game! How could I possibly write this column about classic baseball movies without this next film, the always unforgettable “Rookie of the Year”? Did you think I was going to say “Bull Durham” or “Eight Men Out”? Come on, that’s too easy.
Biff also saw this bad boy in the theater; actually, I just realized that Biff saw all of these in the theater, what a dork. Anyhoo, the plot to this 1993 cheese fest is pretty run of the mill. You know, some kid breaks his arm and then when his cast comes off he has a super human arm that throws 120 miles per hour so he gets drafted by the Cubs and gets advice from Gary Busey and Daniel Stern. Like I said, pretty standard stuff. Needless to say, the kid learns some kind of valuable lesson from the whole ordeal, and of course there’s some boring romance between the stereotypical washed-up ballplayer and the kid’s mother.
Strike three! Yer outta there!
Before you say something, I’ll say it for you: There are a ton of wonderfully corny baseball movies out there to choose from that I didn’t mention. Biff knows. Biff knows baseball. Seriously, though, all Bo Jackson jokes aside, these are the baseball movies you’ve been waiting to see, low on character development and plot and high on baseball playing, dirty jokes and Madonna. It’s getting me all misty eyed.
So before you watch a bunch of rich guys who only work for one quarter of a year and complain about a salary cap, watch some of these fun-filled flicks. They’re what baseball is really all about: farting guys in monkey suits. Hey batter, batter, swing batter!