The Review at a Glance: ( max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: Image Entertainment - 2008
MPAA Rating: PG
Feature running time: 117 minutes
Genre: : Drama, Family, Sports
Disc Format: BD-25
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1
Subtitles: English, Spanish
Starring: Clifton Collins Jr., Cheech Marin, Moises Arias, Ryan Ochoa, Jake T. Austin, Jansen Panettiere, Emilie de Ravin, Lou Gossett Jr.
Directed by: William Dear
Music by: Bill Conti
Written by: W. William Winokur
Region Code: A
Blu-ray Disc release Date: August 2, 2011
"Dream for the fences."
From the director of Angels in the Outfield comes the incredible true story of the underdog foreign Little League team who inspired two nations. Based on a true story, a group of boys from Monterrey, Mexico who become the first non-U.S. team to win the Little League World Series.
'The Perfect Game' has all the makings of a great sports flick. Poor underdogs, the impossible up-hill climb, the coach with demons, family conflict, music by Bill Conte (Rocky), Cheech Marin (you know, Cheech and Chong) as a priest, all culminating in the titular Perfect Game. Inspiration and teak jerking must ensue. I am happy to report I did tear up and feel good inside...but it was not as powerful as the best of its genre.
Cesar, played by Clifton Collins Jr. (Star Trek) high tails it to his native Monterey, Mexico after his major league "career" as a towel boy is ended when his promised chance of playing ball with the Saint Louis Cardinals is taken away. At home he works the iron mill and falls into a heavy drinking depression. When Padre Estaban (Cheech Marin) gives him the chance to coach a team of impoverished, scrawny boys in Monterey's first little league team, he reluctantly accepts. Under his lead these boys grow in baseball skills, and because of them Cesar gains back his passion for the game. Against all odds they set off on a journey to America to over come poverty, bigotry and being the ultimate underdog, to compete in the 1957 Little League World Series.
I was fearing the melodrama of its clichéd story would be full of heavy messages of faith, determination etc. Instead it was far less preachy as anticipated and was a fun journey with plenty of smiles. The connections between coach and team, as well as the boys and their families could have beet a bit more fleshed out, and considering that the title gives away the ending, a stronger connection to the team and their great victory was bit hard to develop. For me, that connection is what creates a deep reaction in a sports movie, and that was slightly lacking here. The boys were all great in their positions, Cheech Marin does such a believable transition from Bong to Padre, I forgot it was him, and and Clifton Collins Jr held the film together with an impressive performance. With no sex, swears or violence, 'The Perfect Game' is a worthy watch, as its rare to find a film the whole family can enjoy.
Rated PG for language.
AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65
**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Low frequency extension:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
- Black level/Shadow detail:
- Color reproduction:
'The Perfect Game' is an impressive looking Blu-ray release from Image Entertainment. Presented in a 2.40:1 aspect ratio, 'The Perfect Game' is a surprisingly detailed high definition transfer, thought it never takes that extra base into reference territory. Colors are on the warm side, looking natural, though lending to flesh-tones on the yellow side. Black levels were dark and consistent, and this 35 mm film had a slight overcast of grain that was only noticeable from up close.. The 5.1 DTS HD Master Audio soundtrack was well-articulated, with intelligible dialogue throughout. The effect channels were utilized well during game scenes, filling the sound-stage with 360 degrees of activity, but besides those segments they were subdued. This is a serviceable track, that sounds great, but this isn't the type of film with audio to wow you.
- Audio Commentary with Director William Dear
- (HD) Behind the scenes Featurette
- (HD) Theatrical Trailer
With no sex, swears or violence, 'The Perfect Game' is a worthy watch, as its rare to find a film the whole family can enjoy. Image Entertainment delivers a wonderful looking Blu-ray that includes a decent Behind The Scenes Featurette, as well as a director William Dear's (Angels in the Outfield, Harry and the Hendersons) audio commentary. Even if not the strongest in its genre, this true story has a positive message and the film has many fun moments. I am glad to have this in my collection as a choice to watch with the whole family.
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Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-X3 3D 1080p 3D High Definition Front Projector
Screen Innovations Solar HD 1.3 120" 2.40:1 CinemaScope Screen
Marantz AV7005 Pre/Pro
Sunfire Cinema Grand 5 200 Amplifier
Sony PS3 Slim Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sunfire Cinema Ribbon Trio On-Wall (5.1)
Sunfire True Subwoofer EQ Solitaire 10"