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The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg (2000)



Average Rating: 7.6/10
Reviews Counted: 65
Fresh: 63 | Rotten: 2

The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg is an affectionate, often very funny portrait of a baseball pioneer.


Average Rating: 7.7/10
Critic Reviews: 22
Fresh: 21 | Rotten: 1

The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg is an affectionate, often very funny portrait of a baseball pioneer.



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Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 870

My Rating

Movie Info

Portrait of the legendary Bronx-born Jewish baseball player who came close to breaking Babe Ruth's record--hitting 58 home runs in a single season--he was baseball's first Jewish star. Tall (6'4"), handsome, and uncommonly good-natured, Greenberg was a secular Jew from Bronx who became "the baseball Moses," an icon for everyone from Walter Matthau to Alan Dershowitz. The film examines how Greenberg's status as a major star gave hope to American Jews who faced religious bigotry during the


Documentary, Sports & Fitness, Special Interest

Aviva Kempner

Oct 16, 2001

Cowboy Booking International

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All Critics (66) | Top Critics (22) | Fresh (63) | Rotten (2) | DVD (8)

It's an adroit manipulation of interviews and stock footage, mostly along the lines of establishing not so much what Hammerin' Hank did for himself, but what he meant to American Jews.

May 7, 2014 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
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Kempner demonstrates how the star's success and dignified bearing inspired a generation of Jews to fight through the ethnic barriers in all fields.

May 7, 2014 Full Review Source: New York Daily News
New York Daily News
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Writer-director Aviva Kempner crafted this love letter to Greenberg by imaginatively weaving interviews with great footage from newsreels and feature films.

May 7, 2014 Full Review Source: New York Post
New York Post
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Aviva Kempner hits a grand slam in her thrilling documentary about baseball, about a great baseball player, about Jews in America and about the country itself in the 1930s and 1940s.

March 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
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The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg is a gem of a baseball documentary because it illuminates what the Hall of Famer's splendid career meant away from the ballpark.

March 19, 2013 Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer
Philadelphia Inquirer
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Aviva Kempner's warm and intelligent mash note to a man who clearly deserved it.

March 19, 2013 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
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Former Detroiter Kempner infuses her portrait of Hank Greenberg with such a joie de vivre that it's a delight for the already converted and nonsports fans alike.

May 7, 2014 Full Review Source: Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
Metro Times (Detroit, MI)

The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg is precisely what a documentary ought to be: engaging and revelatory, turning forgotten footnotes and discarded minutiae into the stuff of riveting drama and poignant laughs.

May 7, 2014 Full Review Source: New Times
New Times

A moving tribute to an overlooked American icon who invariably exhibited an admirable combination of integrity, humility and loyalty.

April 20, 2013 Full Review Source:

Greenberg led by quiet example -- and left an indelible mark on thousands of young lives, not to mention a plaque in baseball's Hall of Fame.

March 19, 2013 Full Review Source: Baltimore Sun
Baltimore Sun

A warmly human look at the career of major-league baseball's most famous Jewish star.

March 21, 2011 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor
Christian Science Monitor

This gem will lift the spirits of baseball fans.

December 28, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

Emphasizes the positive moments in his career, and the film is loose-limbed and ingratiating‚"much like Greenberg himself, who appears in interviews throughout his career.

August 7, 2008 Full Review Source: Sacramento News & Review
Sacramento News & Review

A fine, straightforward tribute to a sports giant who faced blatant prejudice and paved away for the likes Jackie Robinson, Hank Aaron and other minorities...

August 3, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Audience Reviews for The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg

Hank Greenberg was good enough to have me commemorate his career on my pretend baseball hall of fame. Not that I had ever seen him play but his stats seemed impressive. Not the legend that Ruth was probably because he played in Detroit, Greenberg's story is very memorable. Likely inspired Jewish stars like Sandy Koufax in the next generation.
May 31, 2010
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

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