VEB Movie Club: Field of Dreams

While we wait here at VEB for the start of the baseball season, whether it is a month or a full year, we will periodically watch classic baseball movies. The purpose of VEB Movie Club is quite simply for us writers to watch classic movies that we missed and see exactly what we missed. Sometimes we watch a movie that we haven’t watched since we were kids. As a counterpoint, we will also present a writer who has seen the film and remembers it well.

Scooter: It may be a surprising revelation but in all my years I have yet to see Field of dreams in its entirety. I don’t quite know why; they say it’s a delightful baseball movie and I’m a fan of both being delighted and baseball. That being said, I’m excited to watch it for VEB Movie Club!

What I do know about the movie is that it stars Kevin Costner as the … farmer (?) Who turns his Iowa cornfield (?) Into the titular Field of Dreams. See, the title is pretty smart because it was a field, but then it becomes a baseball field. Costner’s portrayal seems to have been well received, which is not surprising since he’s one of my mom’s favorite actors. James Earl Jones is also involved, but I have no idea what role he is playing.

Josey has seen the movie before, so I’ll let her discuss what she’s looking forward to!

Josée: Field of Dreams is considered by many to be one of the best baseball movies, and it’s definitely one of my favorites. While I enjoy the baseball aspect, I also really like the surrounding intrigue. I don’t want to spoil the movie for Scooter or others who haven’t seen it. I will say it’s moving to see Ray (Kevin Costner) make a bold decision that could turn his world upside down and have his wife’s support along the way. The decision he made ended up being much bigger than he expected, and it changed his life forever.

Scooter: “The one constant through all of Ray’s years has been baseball. America rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It was erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. ”The famous“ the people will come ”monologue given by James Earl Jones as Terrence Mann just hits all the right notes, thanks in large part to Jones’ smooth delivery. This film was released in 1988 , but now, with baseball’s future uncertain, his post seems to ring just like over 30 years ago. As Ray explains to Shoeless Joe Jackson why there are lights, Jackson, played by Ray liotta, just shakes his head and growls “Owners”. Some things never change, eh?

Overall, I really enjoyed this movie. I feel like the movies tend to add unnecessary conflict to raise the stakes, and although this movie does flirt with that trope somewhat, with the farm in danger of being shut down (as a farmer’s daughter from the Midwest seeing corn piercing, made my stomach drop – the farm’s profit margins just aren’t that high and yes that little piece of land could be so costly for the bottom line!), J I was pleasantly surprised that they didn’t turn to the over-exaggerated “put on woman” trope. Ray’s wife Annie, played by Amy Madigan, maintained a healthy dose of skepticism, but was mostly supportive, even facing the barrel of bankruptcy. I’m notoriously good enough at guessing how movies are going to turn out, so I always appreciate when writers are able to subvert my expectations.

That being said, Field of Dreams is by no means subversive (although there is a little bit with Annie almost fighting at the PTA meeting over an attempted book ban). It doesn’t make you think too much and it pretty much explains the characters’ motivations for the audience: Ray’s fear of becoming his father, Ray’s guilt for his strained relationship with his father, Terrence’s fatigue and mistrust of him. the world. Sometimes, however, that’s all you want from a movie. It was sweet and it gave me hope. In baseball these days, it’s easy to lose hope, but as Terrence Mann said, baseball has stalled.

Josée: Well said, Scooter. Field of Dreams explains how you can always count on baseball to be there when the going gets tough. (Although it isn’t right now.) But more specifically, the movie is about second chances and not being afraid to follow what your heart tells you to do – even if what you are doing is completely illogical. for everyone.

Ray and his family are barely getting by financially, and the Iowa farmer needs a great crop year to keep things in the dark. Ray, who has a long-standing connection to baseball, dating back to his childhood, hears a voice coming from his cornfield. “If you build it, it will come,” the voice whispers.

So, Ray mows his corn and builds a baseball field, and Shoeless Joe Jackson is soon in his backyard. After hearing another voice, Ray travels the country, risking his farm, to find author Terrance Mann, and the two set off on another journey to find Moonlight Graham, a former ball player and doctor who has only played a game. ‘a single match. After returning to his Iowa farm near the end of the film, many former baseball players take up residence in his field, and with the pressure to sell his farm fixture, Ray and his family choose to keep his farm and to keep the field. By the end of the film, Ray is able to reconnect with his father, and the two have a take on Ray’s field that is worth it.

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