For Love of the Game - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

For Love of the Game Reviews

Top Critic
Michael Sragow
New Yorker
May 8, 2014
For Love of the Game asks whether the same qualities that make an athlete a champion don't also destroy his happiness. The answer, unfortunately, is long-winded and redundant... But some of the baseball scenes are good.
Top Critic
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
May 8, 2014
This is no perfect -- or even half-perfect -- game. It's another movie where conventions are subbed for life lessons, where the emotions are cued by golden oldies and where the motivation (at least on the studio's part) isn't love of the game but money.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
May 8, 2014
Here are two things that definitely don't go together: baseball and piano music.
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Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
May 8, 2014
The baseball sequences are fabulous, not least because Costner looks and moves like a real player a rarity for actors in sports movies... But the love story, a five-year off-and-on affair, is little more than a sop to Costner's romantic faithful.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Desmond Ryan
Philadelphia Inquirer
May 8, 2014
On the field, Costner is consistent, but his exploration of Billy's romantic dilemma is superficial and often wooden.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Desson Thomson
Washington Post
May 8, 2014
Those flashbacks will drive you nuts. As if baseball didn't drag on long enough, almost every inning or out of that Yankees game is punctuated by a memory.
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Rod Dreher
New York Post
May 8, 2014
For love of the God, what is wrong with the once-likable Kevin Costner?
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Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
May 8, 2014
I'm all for romance, you understand. But what makes this a drawback is that these people are all wrong for each other and that the filmmakers don't seem to know it.
Top Critic
May 8, 2014
The rhythms of the game feel right; the rhythms of the romance feel embarrassingly Harlequin, and the picture drags on for over two hours.
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
May 8, 2014
Not a frame reflects the distinctively edgy touch that director Sam Raimi brought to films as diverse as The Evil Dead and A Simple Plan.
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
May 8, 2014
The movie isn't the equivalent of a perfect game, but it's a winner nonetheless.
Top Critic
Keith Phipps
AV Club
May 8, 2014
For Love Of The Game seems lost, as one overlong melodramatic interlude follows another, each more predictable than the entirely predictable game itself.
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
May 8, 2014
This guy is earnest, tireless, noble in his devotion to America's pastime and mostly dull as branch water.
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Rex Reed
New York Observer
May 8, 2014
Under the confident direction of Sam Raimi, Mr. Costner gives a restrained but emotionally accessible performance.
Top Critic
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
March 25, 2011
A perfect game in Yankee Stadium is no big deal these days; two have been pitched in the past 16 months. But a good baseball movie, that's hard.
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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
March 25, 2011
For the first 100 minutes or so I found this hokey but serviceable; after that my watch became more meaningful than anything I could locate on-screen.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
March 22, 2011
Thinking back through the movie, I cannot recall a single thing either character said that was worth hearing in its own right, apart from the requirements of the plot.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
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Robert Koehler
Variety
June 17, 2008
Costner is as uneven as the storytelling itself, stone cold at moments, shimmeringly real in others.
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Wendy Ide
Time Out
January 26, 2006
[The] game stretches over most of the film, but any anticipated suspense is undercut by the sepia-tinted inserts charting the couple's bumpy uninvolving five-year romance from first meeting to acrimonious split(s)
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Jeff Millar
Houston Chronicle
July 21, 2005
For Love of the Game is an entertaining double play: an excellent baseball movie and an even better love story.
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Bob Longino
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
February 21, 2004
At two hours-plus, it doesn't just seem long, it sometimes feels like a double rain delay.
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
February 14, 2001
Those who have even a small soft spot for baseball's soothing rhythms will be hard-pressed to resist it.
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
January 1, 2000
The director especially deserves credit for the verisimilitude of the baseball sequences.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Susan Stark
Detroit News
January 1, 2000
[For Love of the Game] gives Kelly Preston, in by far her most impressive performance yet, a character with a past, a richly textured present and the same kind of emotional complexity accorded Costner's heroic Tiger.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Lawrence Van Gelder
New York Times
January 1, 2000
Filmmaking, like baseball, is a team game, and sometimes even a talented lineup produces unexceptional results.
Top Critic
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
January 1, 2000
For Love of the Gameis designed to put a baseball-sized lump in your throat. Well before that, however, you may feel like putting a lump on Kevin Costner's head.
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Bob Graham
San Francisco Chronicle
January 1, 2000
It is a romance about a man and a woman, and it is a romance about baseball itself.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
January 1, 2000
OK, Sam, maybe you believed you had to sell your soul to Hollywood. But did you have to sell it this cheap?
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Peter Rainer
New York Magazine/Vulture
January 1, 2000
The film comes across like the un-Bull Durham: Every woozy cliché that Shelton and Costner refrained from has been given pride of place here.
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
September 17, 1999
Depressingly, for a plot propelled by a love story, For Love of the Game sure strikes out when it comes to Billy and Jane's romance.
Full Review | Original Score: C