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The Bad News Bears

By Tom Keogh

This likable 1976 comedy gently skewers the whole post- Rocky mania for movies about losers who find their mettle or salvation or purpose in life in competitive sport. Walter Matthau stars as a drunk who becomes manager of a pathetic little-league baseball team. When he brings in a talented girl pitcher (Tatum O'Neal), the crew have an actual chance at winning some games and maybe a championship. But director Michael Ritchie (Downhill Racer) undercuts the romance of it all with the team's foul-mouthed tendencies and Matthau's own decadent spin on mentor-coachdom. Similarly to Ritchie's wicked comedy Smile --which lampooned the fervor surrounding beauty pageants--The Bad News Bears pokes fun at another American institution.

See Also: The Bad News Bears in "Breaking Training", The Bad News Bears Go To Japan

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Your Memories Shared!

"I saw this when it came out in the theaters, I was 8 at the time. It was great. I wanted to be just like Tanner. Oh yeah, Kelly was so cool."

--Anonymous

"I still remember going to see this movie when I was 13. Whenever I need a dose of memory lane from my own little league years, I tune into this movie. It transports me back like a time machine. The clothes, the lingo, (" you spazz"), it had it all. Not to mention a great movie about a bunch of loveable underdogs."

--Johnnyboy 62

"This is possibly one of the greatest underdog movies of all time. Putting together a group of misfits, outcasts and nerds and making them believe in themselves is what America is all about."

--savko

 

FILM FACTS

Buy this VHS movie from Amazon.com! (Click here!)Buy this DVD from Amazon.com! (Click here!)Soundtrack unavailable at Amazon.com - try eBay (see links below)Rated PGNot on an American Film Institute 100 list

Director: Michael Ritchie

Stars: Walter Matthau, Tatum O'Neal, Vic Morrow, Joyce Van Patten, Jackie Earle Haley

Released: April 16, 1976

Availability: DVD VHS


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