Bull Durham - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Bull Durham Reviews

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March 27, 2015
There are quite a few baseball movies, but many of them cover MLB. Bull Durham takes a look at the life of 3 characters trying to make it without the glitz and glamour of MLB, in the minor League system. Kevin Costner is a wise, but aging catcher who feels he has missed his chance at life. Susan Sarandon is used to being with many men that come and go, so in the process only seeks out young players to avoid being truely hurt. Tim Robbins is a cocky brash, but lost mind with a million dollar arm. The movie brilliantly examines the relationships between these three characters and shows how they develop over the course of a baseball season. Bull Durham is an excellent slice of life film that extends beyond baseball.
March 19, 2015
Oh what a wonderful film. The film is perfect all around and deserved the plethora of praises it received. Factoring out my personal experiences and my enamorations for the game, the film captures the game perfectly even though it was through the eyes of the minor leagues and a passionate fan. In addition, the relationships intertwined fits perfectly as characters grow and flourish (amazing performances by Costner, Sarandon and Robbins)... wow.
February 25, 2015
Great all around movie and probably the best baseball movie ever made. Great acting by all, great script, great direction. Pure genius.
January 29, 2015
My Favorite Comedy Film Is 1933's Duck Soup.
½ January 28, 2015
Grade:Higher 7/10

Bull Durham is a sports film which boasts a great cast, comedy
throughout and actually some good bits of baseball. With a variety of
characters also seen in this piece, you can't help but feel good when
watching this and with Romantic themes also coming thorough, it makes
just a little bit better than it already is. Whatever sport movie fans
may think of the sport, you should enjoy this and I felt that this was
firmly a good movie.

The story is a fun film about a minor league baseball who hire a
veteran batsman and a young promising pitcher who may make it big one
day, both the characters work together well and the story always lets
the two express there polar opinions and feelings. It can be funny at
time, not really laugh out loud but it still raises some chuckles and
if anything it is very much feel good and smile like entertainment.

Kevin Costner in the main role is good and really shows his wise face
as the wise old veteran batsman Crash Davis. Susan Sarandon as the love
interest of the film Annie Savoy is good, maybe slightly crazy at times
and over the top but she is fun and makes the film much
more...passionate. Tim Robbins for me is truly a star turn as Nuke the
young pitcher as although Costner leads the film, Robbins is very good
in his young testosterone filled role, he is fun and enjoyable.

Ron Shelton writes and directs this well and really does a good job
here to create the characters on paper and bring them out well whilst
directing, shows he really had the vision and performed it out well. I
enjoyed the dialogue which really sets this film up nicely and is the
whole reason it is funny, the sport side is fun and the scenes that
actually contain Baseball are truly quite thrilling but also keeping
the comedic and romantic side within it.

It isn't always so funny and so maybe that could be a criticism but the
film is still good, could also be said that the romance side coupled
with the serious sport scenes are just too soppy, that is up to you if
you see it. Sarandon is also not at her best in this, doesn't affect
it's rating but when she is in it, I felt she can annoy at times.

Sport movie fans should like this as it contains enough sport to
actually be considered a sport film, it has the romance dabbled in so
be aware if you hate a rom com. If you want a fun comedy then this if
for you, it isn't out and out laughter as said previously but it raises
a quick smile and a laugh but can also warm the heart when it wants to.

Overall I give this a higher 7/10, it is a Firmly Good movie, not near being
Very Good but breaks away from just being KIND of Good. With this you
should watch it with a little warm heart going into it and it will be
hugely enjoyable, If it doesn't make you laugh then look to the romance
part as it really can be fun and hugely entertaining.
January 13, 2015
A sports classic with a terrific cast and a fun story.
½ November 14, 2014
An witty concoction of love,sex and baseball.
½ November 12, 2014
Great writing and great acting. The cast had excellent chemistry that gave the movie good comedic timing and deep, heartwarming scenes. One of the best comedies I've seen in a while.
October 30, 2014
As a lover of baseball movies I cannot abide Bull Durham. Before you go crying "Blasphemy!" let me explain. You see the reason that I can't stand this film is because it pulls the old bait-and-switch. It sells itself as a baseball movie and draws you in with the humorous scenes of Crash teaching Nuke a lesson by tipping off the batter on his pitches, or a moment where most of the team is meeting at the mound in the middle of a game to discuss their everyday life dilemmas. But then you sit down to start watching and you are treated to an intolerable voice-over by Susan Sarandon. Lo and behold, this isn't a baseball movie, it's a rom-com that just happens to center around players on a baseball team. I don't generally have an issue with romantic comedies, but this one just drives me crazy, because I find Susan Sarandon's character utterly detestable. Her entire baseball and sex-based religion makes her one of the most unlikable female leads I have ever seen in a rom-com. I suspect the filmmakers are trying to get the audience to root for her to end up with Kevin Costner, but frankly I just wish he would wise up and find a decent person.

There is a good film hiding in Bull Durham about a cocky young player and the seasoned veteran who teaches him to harness his abilities and prepare for the Majors. In fact I think that movie was made again somewhere else but much better (I just can't think of the film off the top of my head.) Unfortunately, every time I get a few moments to enjoy that story we have to be shown Susan Sarandon's face again to remind us this isn't that film. There isn't even a decent resolution to that story, because Nuke moves up to the Majors mid-season and still appears to be pretty rough around the edges. Then they treat us to the 20-30 minute long series of love-making scenes. Talk about excessive! I get the idea that Crash and Annie are madly in love after the first 5 minutes of this, you don't have to show them in every room of the house going at it. I don't think I have properly expressed just how much I despise this film, but I've at least given you a hint. If someone cut and pasted all the baseball stuff into a short film I would love it, but as it stands Bull Durham provides too much terrible rom-com stuff without enough baseball.
September 14, 2014
"Crash" Davis (Kevin Costner), a veteran of 12 years in minor league baseball, is sent down to the single-A (advanced) Durham Bulls for a specific purpose: to educate hotshot rookie pitcher Ebby Calvin LaLoosh (Tim Robbins) about becoming a major-league talent, and to control Ebby's haphazard pitching. Crash immediately begins calling Ebby by the degrading nickname of "Meat", and they get off to a rocky start. Thrown into the mix is Annie Savoy (Susan Sarandon), a lifelong spiritual seeker who has latched onto the "Church of Baseball" and has, every year, chosen one player on the Bulls to be her lover and student. Annie flirts with Crash and Ebby, but Crash walks out, saying he's too much a veteran to "try out" for anything. Before he leaves, Crash further sparks Annie's interest with a memorable speech listing the things he "believes in", ending with "I believe in long, slow, soft, deep wet kisses that last three days... Good night". Despite some animosity between them, Annie and Crash work, in their own ways, to shape Ebby into a big-league pitcher. Annie plays mild bondage games, reads poetry to him, and gets him to think in different ways (and gives him the nickname "Nuke"). Crash forces Nuke to learn "not to think" by letting the catcher make the pitching calls (memorably at two points telling the batters what pitch is coming after Nuke rejects his calls), and lectures him about the pressure of facing major league hitters who can hit his "heat" (fastballs). Crash also talks about the pleasure of life in "The Show" (Major League Baseball), which he briefly lived for "the 21 greatest days of my life" and to which he has tried for years to return. Meanwhile, as Nuke matures, the relationship between Annie and Crash grows, until it becomes obvious that the two of them are a more appropriate match, except for the fact that Annie and Nuke are currently a couple...

Baseball movies were not considered a viable commercial prospect in 1988 and every studio passed except for Orion Pictures, which gave writer/director Ron Shelton a USD $9 million budget, an eight-week shooting schedule, and creative freedom. Even so, many cast members accepted salaries lower than their usual due to their enthusiasm for the material. Costner was cast because of the actor's natural athletic ability. During filming, Costner was able to hit two home runs while the cameras were rolling. The movie is partly based upon the minor league experiences of writer/director Ron Shelton and depicts the players and fans of the Durham Bulls, a minor league baseball team in Durham, North Carolina. Kurt Russell, who helped Ron Shelton develop the script, also played minor league baseball in the early-1970s. There really was a ballplayer named "Crash" Davis. Ron Shelton found his name in a baseball listing as a minor leaguer and American Legion player. Realizing that he would have to have the permission of the real Davis to use his name (and thus avoid a lawsuit). When Shelton approached Davis, he was asked "Do I (Meaning Kevin Costner) get the girl in the end?" Shelton told him he does and Davis signed off his permission. Originally, after Annie and Crash have their argument in Crash's apartment, there was a scene in which Annie and Crash go to a bar and have a heart-to-heart talk. In the talk, Crash asks Annie why she loves baseball so much. She explains that several years before, her estranged father passed away and that the funeral took place in Florida. She was so distraught after the funeral that she wandered off and ended up at the New York Yankees spring training facility where she met legendary Yankees catcher, Thurman Munson (thus explaining her shrine to Munson seen in the film). From then on, she developed a deep-rooted love of the game. According to Ron Shelton in the DVD commentary, he cut that scene out when it was received poorly during a test screening. After the scene was removed, a second test screening was done and the movie received a high score. "Bull Durham" was ranked #5 on the American Film Institute's list of the 10 greatest films in the genre "Sports" in June 2008. In David Ansen's review for Newsweek magazine, he wrote that the film "works equally as a love story, a baseball fable and a comedy, while ignoring the clichés of each genre". Roger Ebert praised Susan Sarandon's performance in his review for the Chicago Sun-Times: "I don't know who else they could have hired to play Annie Savoy, the Sarandon character who pledges her heart and her body to one player a season, but I doubt if the character would have worked without Sarandon's wonderful performance". Richard Corliss, in his review for Time, wrote, "Costner's surly sexiness finally pays off here; abrading against Sarandon's earth-mama geniality and Robbins' rube egocentricity, Costner strikes sparks". I liked this movie the first time I saw it in 1988, and I still like it. It has such a great balance between comedy, love story, sports movie and emotional drama. There´s fantastic comic timing, there´s true sparks/dynamics between Costner (just brilliant as Crash), Robbins and Sarandon, the direction is of high standard and it still manages to avoid the true clichés of each genre it does contain as said as well by David Ansen. I love the verbal fights between Costner and Sarandon. I love the speech made by Crash in what he believes in: "Well, I believe in the soul, the cock, the pussy, the small of a woman's back, the hanging curve ball, high fiber, good scotch, that the novels of Susan Sontag are self-indulgent, overrated crap. I believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. I believe there ought to be a constitutional amendment outlawing Astroturf and the designated hitter. I believe in the sweet spot, soft-core pornography, opening your presents Christmas morning rather than Christmas Eve and I believe in long, slow, deep, soft, wet kisses that last three days." You just simply fall for the oh so beautiful and sexy Sarandon and her ways, but I also see myself so much in how Crash tackles her. "Bull Durham" has a lot in common with "Slap Shot", another great sports movie, and Ron Shelton managed to get back together with Kevin Costner and create another great sports movie with "Tin Cup" back in 1996. "Bull Durham" is just a gem in my eyes.
September 6, 2014
Very good baseball movie. Reminded me of Major League and The Natural.
August 15, 2014
This baseball flick is a treat from the 80's. It takes sex and mixes it with the philosophies of baseball, or makes the attempt to mix the two. The film takes itself very seriously but does not hold well today. For the most part the jokes aren't funny anymore and the musical queues occur too often to suggest that this happy go lucky, feel-good film just keeps on giving, when really the moments are fairly ineffective and melodramatic. There are a lot of situations that occur without any explanation and the viewers are meant to just assume that things just happened to fall into place that way. This picture was sculpted to have "a lot of heart" as I am sure the producers said over and over again. I felt though that despite the acting, which was pretty good, there was little to this picture. I watched it feeling almost nothing at all. I liked seeing Tim Robbins as a younger guy performing and Susan Sarandon and Kevin Costner as well. As the film was nearing its end I felt that I learned nothing save for how to make a "sexy" formulaic baseball film but in that formula there is definitely something inside that reads classic. The attitude that the picture evokes is definitely one that holds the spirit of the sport that I can remember somehow but do not feel is around anymore with the sport. The great American pastime is well and alive on the surface of this picture but in its core I feel there is too little enthusiasm. Or perhaps it is served in a flavor I do not prefer.
August 3, 2014
(First and only full viewing - 12/9/2011)
July 16, 2014
Very good sports comedy. Good actors and incredibly funny
July 9, 2014
There's a reason this is one of the most highly rated baseball pictures in film. It explores the true fabric of the game. It's laughter and it's sorrows.
June 15, 2014
Many have called "Bull Durham" the best sports movie ever but that's a load of... "bull." I look at true sports stories like "Miracle" and "The Blind Side," or fictional sports stories like "Hoosiers" and "Rocky," and I wonder how anybody can be impressed with this film. It was a good movie, but was a big disappointment since I was expecting "the best sports movie ever." Now that I have been clear on my stance in the contention for being "the best sports movie ever," there are a lot of great things to be said about this film. First, the film offers a lot of insight into the psyche of a baseball pitcher. Kevin Costner is the perfect strategist as he teaches a hotheaded pitcher not to over think his pitches. He was cast for his athleticism and actually hit two home runs with the cameras rolling. He played this role to perfection, but the love story and Susan Sarandon's character just got in the way. I suppose that there has to be some x-factor to create competition between the players (other than their egos), but there is so much sex that it became unappealing. If I was expecting a romantic comedy, it would have been one thing. But when you are expecting "the best sports movie ever," it seems like there should be more sports. Next, this young Tim Robbins was very memorable. I never realized that he was so tall, but his 6'5 stature played well with his lightning-fast-but-erratic-pitching-accuracy. I also think it is cool that the writer was a minor league baseball player and brought his own experiences into this screenplay. The realism is there - it is just unfortunate that so much of this film took place off of the field and in the bedroom. I would definitely recommend "Bull Durham" to any sports fan, as long as they are prepared for the sexual content and are not expecting "the best sports movie ever."
June 9, 2014
A little slow in some parts but one of my favorite baseball movies of all time
May 27, 2014
Always good to go back and watch a classic during baseball season
May 2, 2014
First time I've seen this since about 1989 - it really holds up. Good story, solid performances, and baseball.
April 27, 2014
Has aged about as well as a late 1980s Steve Winwood or Phil Collins record.
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