Off the Black Reviews
Washington Post | Desson Thomson
Writer-director James Ponsoldt's film treats big subjects -- loneliness, coming-of-age and father-son relationships -- with such half-baked conviction, it's a wonder the screen doesn't redden with embarrassment. Which makes it all the more gratifying to watch Nolte pulverize the dramatic banality around him.
even if the script had the best of intentions and the acting wasn't bad. Nolte plays his usual overbearing character role (how he managed to give the performance he did in The Prince of Tides is still an unknown to me). The movie had all the right clichés, the balance of drama and humor, and everything else required for the formula. It just didn't do anything for me. I struggled to get to the end of the movie.
Don't recommend it unless you have nothing else to watch
[font=Century Gothic]"Off the Black" is an exploration of why umpires are some of the most vilified people around. To be serious, it is about how wrong it is to blame one's problems on other people(like blaming a lost game on an umpire's decision), instead of accepting responsibility for one's life. And we should all shut off the television, get out of the house more and live life to its fullest but I could think of plenty of better things to do than attend a reunion.(Both Ray and Dave's father sit around and consume an unholy amount of beer.) In the end, Ray does not realize what he is missing until he knows he is dying. But it is ironic that a movie about life is so lifeless and flat, despite another rich performance from Nick Nolte.[/font]
I really liked the plot line and thought the acting of the teenager was really well done. Investigates many emotions that people go through.