Oct 022011
Authors: Jason Berlinberg

Just in time for the Major League Baseball playoffs to start (unless you are the Rockies), a profound baseball film has hit theaters in the form of “Moneyball.”

The film stars Brad Pitt as Oakland Athletics’ general manager Billy Beane, a former big leaguer who never reached his full potential on the field.

In order to transform his team into championship material, Beane enlists the help of Yale graduate Peter Brand (Jonah Hill) to select players that best fit the team using a formula that Brand created.

This formula finds talented players irrespective of their salaries, a strategy that is criticized by scouts in the Athletics’ system and becomes the laughing stock of the entire league.

And although this baseball plan is the main set-up for the movie, “Moneyball” is not really about baseball at all.

It is about one man’s unwavering determination for perfection and his ultimate realization that true perfection is unattainable.

The film expands upon this very innately human quality through Beane’s desire for redemption to prove his worth to his family.

It is no coincidence that Beane’s strategy for the Athletics’ organization is to stand up for the little guy –– that teams with little money can compete with teams that are laughing their way to the bank.

This ultimately establishes Beane as a tragic hero, as bigger market teams like the New York Yankees have established a sort of championship monopoly amongst the league.

As far as the acting duo of Pitt and Hill goes, it is a surprisingly good match. Hill’s Brand rattles off nerd speak while Pitt’s Beane exudes smug determination. The two characters balance each other out perfectly.

Check out “Moneyball” for some inspiration during this Major League Baseball postseason.

Movie reviewer Jason Berlinberg can be reached at verve@collegian.com.

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