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"Passive Aggressive. It works for my mother, it works for Duolingo" Luis Von Ahn , co-founder of Duolingo from his TED talk, How to make learning as addictive as social media.

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Friday, April 7, 2023

F is For 42



 A to Z Challenge

A Month At The Movies


#AtoZChallenge 2023 letter F

Hello and welcome back to A Month at the Movies,  my contribution to the A to Z challenge for 2023.

This year I am copying from a myriad of other A to Z  challengers by reprinting the same synopsis about my theme with every letter.  You can skip over this part if you want to.  

I love movies and have decided to share with you a movie each day that I have enjoyed to one degree or another.  With each entry, I'll give a brief synopsis of the film, share a positive and negative review from Rotten Tomatoes ( a website, I didn't use much at all until preparing for the challenge), discuss its resiliency (the theme of the A to Z challenge this year), and other tidbits like whether the film may appear in my top 100 film list, which I have been revamping this year. I think that's enough in the way of introduction, considering you'll be reading it (hopefully) 20 more times this month.

Film: 42

Director: Brian Helgeland




I grew up loving baseball. I didn't think much of it.  Baseball was always there.  I could watch it on t.v. I could play it with my friends and I could dream about being my favorite players Dick Allen or Hank Aaron. 

These players were black and I was white. At that time I had never met a black person, but that didn't bother me.  My heroes were great baseball players and I wanted to be like them.  That I could do that is  a tribute to Branch Rickey, the general manager who helped integrate baseball and to Jackie Robinson who was the first black player in the modern era of baseball.










Image by Welcome to All ! ツ from Pixabay









Positive Tomato: Well-paced and often riveting, and manages to inspire while remaining true to sport and to the player who changed it and all of the professional sport forever. Bruce DeMara - Toronto Star

Negative Tomato:  42 is a hackneyed, cookie-cutter film that manages to tell us absolutely nothing about a turning point in American history. AP Kryza - Willamette Week



Chadwick Boseman shines as Robinson. He gives us a glimpse of how difficult it is to be the first. 

Harrison Ford transforms himself into Branch Rickey.

Resiliency: When Rickey tells Robinson his plan to have him be the first black player in baseball, they have this exchange...

Robinson: You want a player who doesn't have the guts to fight back?

Rickey: No. No. I want a player who has the guts not to fight back.

This resiliency to take the verbal abuse, the discrimination, to receive the hate mail and death threats is shown scene after scene.  

Top 100: Regardless of whether it makes my top 100 (I imagine it will) it will always be my top 42.



A to Z Connections: This is the 3rd sports film (Breaking Away and Chariots of Fire) and the second film with Harrison Ford (The Empire Strikes Back). 

Next Time: G is for Gene Noir 

7 comments:

Amy Roller said...

Solid choice for F. Well acted movie. But in my love of race/sports movies, this isn’t at the top.

John Holton said...

I didn't see the movie, but then we don't go to movies as a rule. The story is an inspirational one and really had two heroes, Robinson and Branch Rickey. It's hard to imagine baseball without Black players...

Birgit said...

Excellent film and that Negative review guy needs to stop thinking he is Pauline Kael and smarten up. I found this a great movie and Chadwick shines, of course but Harrison was excellent and deserved an Oscar Nom.

Joy Weese Moll said...

Hank Aaron was my favorite non-Cardinal player when I was growing up. I liked this movie, too.

Mrs Fever said...

My only association with the number 42 is from The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, so I was pleasantly surprised to find this review, which is on another topic entirely. :)

I'm not typically a sports-movie fan, but I do like baseball and I'm a fan of Harrison Ford, so I'd be inclined to give this one a try. Thanks for the recommendation!

Donna B. McNicol said...

My youngest daughter did the casting for the background extras (at more than one location). She did such a good job, she has gotten many more opportunities (including all the Hunger Games movies) and now is the extras casting director working with Francis Ford Coppola on Megalopolis. So proud of her and all her work. Oh, and 42 was a great movie!

Kristin said...

I haven't seen this movie either. I guess I don't watch many movies lately! But, my A to Z post for tomorrow is a column of my parent's pastor discussing Jackie Robinson being assigned to play with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Really he discusses the reaction of black people to it.

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