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A heart-warming sports flick, The Rookie greatly benefits from understated direction and the emotional honesty Dennis Quaid brings to the role of Jim Morris. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

A true story about a coach who discovers that it's never too late for dreams to come true. Jim Morris (Dennis Quaid) never made it out of the minor leagues before a shoulder injury ended his pitching career twelve years ago. Now a married-with-children high-school chemistry teacher and baseball coach in Texas, Jim's team makes a deal with him: if they win the district championship, Jim will try out with a major-league organization.

Cast & Crew

Dennis Quaid
Jim Morris
Jay Hernandez
Joaquin "Wack" Campos
Beth Grant
Jimmy's Mother
Rick Gonzalez
Rudy Bonilla
Chad Lindberg
Joe David West
Angelo Spizzirri
Joel De La Garza
Mark Johnson
Producer
Philip Steuer
Executive Producer
John Schwartzman
Cinematographer
Barry Robison
Production Designer
Bruce Finlayson
Costume Designer
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News & Interviews for The Rookie

Critic Reviews for The Rookie

All Critics (155) | Top Critics (49) | Fresh (130) | Rotten (25)

  • At two-plus hours, The Rookie is a good 20 minutes too long, but for father-son teams waiting eagerly for the umpire's "Play ball!", it's an uplifting season opener.

    May 12, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Morris ultimately lasted two partial seasons in the majors, and the film's rendering of his minor-league struggle is so enjoyable you want to see more of that and less of the everyday life preceding it.

    May 12, 2014 | Full Review…
  • Though Hancock traffics in a lot of bogus small-town sentiment, The Rookie exhibits a refreshingly honest understanding of baseball as a job, with long road trips away from home and a workmanlike routine.

    May 12, 2014 | Full Review…
  • It's Quaid and his fellow actors, Rachel Griffiths and Brian Cox, who lift the film out of its intermittent doldrums, and together they deliver that rare thing: a nuanced sports movie.

    March 12, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Until The Rookie came along, I'd forgotten how good and smart a family film can be.

    March 12, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Deftly constructed to stoke the baseball-phenom fantasies of coulda-shoulda-woulda middle-aged guys and fields-of-dreaming young diamond studs.

    February 23, 2012

Audience Reviews for The Rookie

  • Jul 10, 2013
    Filled with very solid performances by the entire cast, "The Rookie" presents the true story of a man who grew up as a kid, moving around with his family and being driven away from his dreams in baseball. When his family finally finds a final resting place, he must live his life there, isolated from baseball and focussing on dirty work and family. Once the opportunity to teach and coach a house-league baseball team arises, he does not hesitate. This sparks people to talk about how good of a pitcher this coach is, and his career escalates from there. Like I said, the acting is great, the story is presented very well, the script is solid, and the direction is nice and tender. "The Rookie" may not be the best baseball film of all time, but it is a very solid effort/entry into the genre.
    KJ P Super Reviewer
  • Jun 12, 2011
    The Rookie is one of the few sports films that really doesn't do anything for me. The film is overly cliched and is more irritating and boring than anything else. I saw this film made it on the list of worst sports movies ever made. I can understand why. The film is very poorly written, the acting is terrible, the plot is predictable and Dennis Qaids kid in the film is irritating as hell. But its normal for a Disney film. That's to be expected. I thought the film was really a chore to finish, the only reason that I have this is because it came as a two pack packaged with a film that I wanted. I thought this film would be good, it wasn't. Sometimes a story with lots of cliches can be interesting and fun, when the script is well written, and the cast is good. But thats not the case with The Rookie. The Rookie tries too hard at being a feel good film, and instead it misses the mark, big time. Theres little interest in the film to be had 40 minutes in and the film feels sloppy, and poorly made. The Rookie could have been a great film, but it uses the usual feel good movie formula in such a bad way that the film is laughable. If you're looking for one of the worst feel good sports films, then The Rookie is that film. Boring, predictable and so poorly made all you want to do after watching this film is forget about it.
    Alex r Super Reviewer
  • Aug 08, 2010
    Life is perfect, isn't it? There are no hitches, and it just moves along perfectly. That's how life is, right? Well, maybe in a Disney movie, but that's not what makes a good film. When you think about it, it's the ups and downs in characters' lives that makes movies interesting. Who cares if this guy's life is perfect? It's boring. Yeah, it's based on a true story, so they couldn't do much about it, but they really should have taken some creative license with this one, because watching this guy have success at everything he does with absolutely no failure is not interesting. It's boring. Plain and simple. Not to mention that it seemed that half the movie was Quaid's kid smiling at his daddy. Though Quaid does what he can with the poorly-written role he's given, the film still sucks.
    Jay H Super Reviewer
  • Jan 01, 2010
    Truly compelling and honest emotional films are really hard to come by these days mostly due to the fact that good old fashioned family values and inspirational stories take a backseat to dark and gritty crime dramas and murder mysteries. But John Lee Hancock's "The Rookie" proves that films like that are not dead. "The Rookie" is the inspiring and heartwarming true story of Jimmy Morris, a high school science teacher and coach of a small town team that's had a bad season. So coach Morris makes a bet with his team that if they win the championship he would try out for a major league team. Well his team wins and now Morris has to uphold his end of the bargain and tryout for a team, but little does he or anyone else know is that Jimmy Morris is about to become the oldest and most unlikely rookie. It's a film that literally will make you stand up and cheer, it will touch every fiber of your soul and every inch of your heart. "The Rookie" may seem like a run of the mill, seen it before sports film but trust me it's not. No this film is something more and it's something that must be experienced to truly believe the amazing power that it exudes and the extreme depth of emotion and character that is in it makes more of a great example of Disney magic and film making at it's finest. Dennis Quaid gives the performance of a lifetime as the high school coach turned MLB all star, Quaid's performance is skillful, powerful, emotional and honest. He gives his all and then some to the part and to the film and it shows. All in all the cast does amazing in this film and play out there parts well in this brilliant and up lifting film. "The Rookie" is a fun, enjoyable, smart and well mounted film that has it's heart in it's right place and it's game on the right track. It's a must see film that shows that no matter how old you are you still can make your dreams come true.
    C.R. L Super Reviewer

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