A League Of Their Own (1992)

Penny Marshall directs Geena Davis, Tom Hanks and Madonna in this period sports comedy about the WWII women’s baseball league set up to entertain the folks when the boys went to war.

“There’s no crying in baseball.”

Here’s a sweet movie that’s cultural footprint is improbably bigger than the quality of the actual product itself. That’s no shade towards the sleeper hit of 1992 but its impact on popular culture seems to have outlived that of even the summer’s big hitters (Lethal Weapon 3, Patriot Games etc.) (also, no pun intended). Watching gentle feminism – somewhere between Germaine Greer and Geri Halliwell – was still a pleasant rarity in a studio release back then. Tom Hanks was taking his tentative steps away from comedy into serious romantic leads and even serious-er prestige roles. Hard to believe he wasn’t a fully fledged A-Lister at this point given the consistency of his releases. His shuffles towards mega stardom, post-Big, were subtle and faltering – irascible Jimmy Duggan was the first quantum leap that got him to the rarefied position where he still is today. Madonna also, at last, found another role that played to her strengths. So much stronger in a showy support rather than having to carry the movie. She provides a nice ballad as well in “This Used To Be My Playground.” Overall, it is a lark to watch though never rises above the set course that most sports movies run around. Watchable, afternoon friendly, but you have to wonder what the makers of Boomerang, Far & Away and Unlawful Entry feel about a slightly inferior package standing the test of time over their own 1992 summer releases.


Perfect Double Bill: Let The Girls Play (2018)

My wife and I do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/


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