Rating: 3 of 5
Maybe I don’t watch enough dramas, but Trouble with the Curve feels a little like a more traditional sports movie, like from the 80s and 90s. The kind that don’t exist anymore. Maybe it’s because it has all the elements of an old school sports movie (like I knew exactly how it was going to play out to the degree where I was a little bit frustrated some things took so long). And maybe because it seems like all Hollywood makes these days are either giant tentpoles or really dark, indie dramatic dramas. This is a nice, mid-range sports movie and it works.
It’s a little slow in the beginning. The first 30-45 minutes sets the story up nicely, but it’s not that interesting until the characters come together. Then it has the fun and the turmoil and the charm that’s in the preview.
Clint Eastwood plays an old, broken man who is still really good at his job well. He’s a good actor.
Amy Adams is decent. I know she’s a good actress because of other roles, but in this one she created a very simple, straight-forward character that doesn’t seem like it required any effort or an exercising of her talent. She’s serviceable but nothing special.
Justin Timberlake really brings life to the story. More often, a character like his that affects all the other characters and makes them more interesting by interacting with them does it through conflict. But his Johnny supports the other two characters and they become more vibrant and interesting. He’s charming and funny which brings a lot of the energy they channeled in the preview.
The directing was decent and the production was decent. There’s nothing exceptionally well done about any of it but it’s a good movie.
Which is what good mid-range movies are. They aren’t breathtaking and don’t win awards. They’re cheap but they make money. They’re entertaining. They’re comforting when you happen upon them on tv. Even though this was probably developed as more of an indie, the characters aren’t that dynamic or difficult or compelling, the story odd enough or dramatic enough. It’s just a straight up, nice little sports movie that plays out pretty much exactly as you expect.