Molly Knight, author of The Best Team Money Can Buy: The Los Angeles Dodgers’ Wild Struggle to Build A Baseball Powerhouse, on Bumgarner v Kershaw, baseball blackouts and how MLB can learn from Japan.
Some folks boast a photographic memory while others claim to count cards. Me, I have a strange telekinetic ability to predict the plot of a movie based solely on the coming attraction. I will channel these talents every week in an effort to breakdown the latest summer blockbuster. With a little luck, and patience, I’ll also connect the movie to a current sports story however, this final pursuit may result in complete and abject failure.
We try to make it so that the highest grossing film of the coming weekend is the preview dissected on our Tuesday Plodding Through the Previews post. Today was an exception however because I just could not lower myself to a critical analysis of the sure to be summer sensation Zookeeper starring Kevin James. Instead, we’re going to take a closer look at Horrible Bosses, which on the surface, looks like a preview much more in line with my delicate sensibilities.
A second by second breakdown of the preview
:5 – I wonder if Kevin Spacey is pleased with his post American Beauty career arc? After a string of successful gigs – Usual Suspects, Se7en, American Beauty – it feels like he has drifted off into relative obscurity while working on several pet projects like Beyond the Sea. Maybe Spacey’s role in Horrible Bosses will catapult him into a new genre of comedic roles a la Robert De Niro in Meet the Parents.
:22 – With Jason Bateman, Charlie Day, and Jason Sudeikis, we could have ourselves one of the most bankable starting rotations since the days of Palmer, McNally, Dobson, and Cuellar with the Baltimore Orioles.
:38 – When are we going to start giving Colin Farrell some credit for being a pretty good actor? In Bruges was awesome and it just feels like the guy takes a ton of crap for being a good looking guy with great hair and an awesome Irish accent.
1:11 – Hey look, a Jennifer Aniston movie that just might not suck.
1:26 – Jamie Foxx playing a “murder consultant”. He really has come a long way since winning the Academy Award for Ray.
1:35 – More people should be watching “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” on FX. Charlie Day, not Jason Sudeikis, is poised to be the breakout star of this film. My only hope is that he doesn’t commit career suicide by signing on to be the comedic sidekick in the next Brett Ratner good cop/bad cop movie. Where’s Seann William Scott when you need him?
1:58 – Gotta applaud the effort.
2:23 – Tater Salad and Bunk playing cops. I hope this is set to be a spinoff next summer.
The Plod (where I guess the plot of the movie based solely on the preview)
Bateman, Day, and Sudeikis all want to kill their horrible bosses – Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Aniston, and Colin Farrell respectively. Because they’re all “nice guys” who wouldn’t know the first thing about murder, they hire a “murder consultant” to help them explore their villainous options. Of course, all kinds of hijinx ensue as the 3 best friends fail over and over again to execute any sort of successful murder. Along the way, Sudeikis falls for Aniston and the two become romantically involved while Kevin Spacey turns out to be not such a bad guy after all, just a little misunderstood and lonely. Not only does he give Jason Bateman that much desired promotion but the two spark a lifelong friendship built on trust and respect. The only “boss” I worry about actually losing is Colin Farrell. I could see some sort of accident befalling him, completely unrelated to anything the 3 friends conspired to do.
Connection to a Current Sports Story
Is there a worse boss in professional sports than Frank McCourt, the soon to be deposed owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers? Here’s hoping that MLB gets in there and cleans up this embarrassing mess as quickly as possible. The Dodgers remain one of the flagship teams in MLB and need to end up in the hands of an owner who knows and understands how to successfully operate a professional sports franchise. But the question is, will Bud Selig allow Mark Cuban to ever own a MLB team? Hopefully the Dallas Mavericks successful title run in 2011 shows people that Cuban is interested in winning above all else and wouldn’t alter the integrity of the game. His energy and passion would be a great boost to the Dodger clubhouse and all of Chavez Ravine.
Have you ever tried looking at a map of the world where down is up and south is north as if the globe were flipped over on its axis? Try it sometime and when you do you will realize that it makes no sense. It’s like an optical illusion sure to make you go cross-eyed in a matter of minutes. Well, this is how I feel about the AL East. Sure its fun to look at the standings in early April and see Baltimore, Toronto and Tampa Bay at the top but the longer you look the more backwards it seems. Something just feels out of place until you come to your senses and realize what was wrong with that earlier picture: no New York or Boston. Well luckily, April 25th is here and the Yankees and Sox have reclaimed their rightful place – 1st and 3rd respectively – at the top of the AL East world.
Bitter much? When you’re an Orioles fan, like myself, bitterness is part of the bargain. I only wish I were allowed to hope into May. That would be like an early Christmas/birthday/Father’s Day present wrapped into one. This past weekend series vs the Yankees was a bitter pill. First a rainout on Friday, then a 15-3 butt whipping on Sat night followed by a 6-3 extra inning heartbreaker on Easter Sunday. It was like unwrapping a Cadbury Creme Egg only to find that the chocolate egg has been cracked causing the sugar yolk paste to ooze onto the tin foil wrapper. Very frustrating stuff!!!
And now for your weekly trip around the bases.
1B – Andre Either has a 21 game hitting streak. Pretty impressive for a guy who I actually played against in summer ball. Unfortunately his prodigious accomplishments at the plate are being over shadowed by the most public divorce in MLB today.
2B – The S.S. Ozzie Guillen is sinking. The White Sox have lost 9 of 10 putting their overall record at 8-14 bad enough for last place in the AL Central. Good news for us sports fans, you can watch it all unravel here on Ozzie Guillen’s twitter feed.
3B – Granted it was a overcast/cold Friday afternoon in the Windy City but can you remember seeing so many open seats at Wrigley Field? Pittsburgh? Yes. Toronto? Probably. Citi Field…ABSOLUTELY!!! But every thing is different on the Northside. Good news Cubs fans, Bud Selig isn’t overly concerned about the attendance problem.
HR – Speaking of the New York Mets, how about the Amazins rattling off 4 wins in a row? It’s enough for Jerry Seinfeld to forget about his ongoing feud with Donald Trump.
NFL Equivalent – Chicago Bears: When it’s not your team, tradition can be such an annoying word. Franchises either have it or don’t. Those that do, wave it in front of those that don’t like it is some sort of VIP all access pass to the Bada Bing. The Bears and Dodgers have it, Phoenix Coyotes…not so much. In general, Bears and Dodgers fans are a palatable sort. Each appreciate their rich history and follow their team with intense passion and knowledge. Also don’t look past the uniforms. LA and Chicago have remained on the cutting edge of fashion even though they haven’t changed their styles in over 50 years.
Google Search: Divorce is never a pretty proposition, especially when every trial and tribulation is splashed across the ESPN bottomline. This would be the case for Frank and Jamie McCourt, “co-owners” of the LA Dodgers. For the second year in a row, the ownership tumult threatens to overshadow any on the field accomplishments. The Dodgers have changed managers with Don Mattingly finally replacing Joe Torre. I say finally because Mattingly was rumored to succeed Torre going back to their days together with the New York Knights.
Famous Movie Quote: There’s a real big gap between getting your ass kicked and having a dancing, singing sprite fool you with trickery and then strike your throat before you even know you’re in a fight. But I wouldn’t expect someone like you to understand that, because all you do is make moves from up in your ivory tower. – Vince Vaughn from The Break-Up
Talk about a disappointing movie. The Break-Up had all the ingredients, Vince Vaughn in his comedic prime and Jennifer Aniston at the peak of her post-Friends cougar hotness. But somehow, the movie failed to live up to these lofty expectations, perhaps because it went the “dramedy” route instead of cashing in with a full fledged slapstick side splitter. My wife and I were only dating when we saw the film and it was so depressing that it caused us to reevaluate our entire relationship. With the ongoing McCourt soap opera, the Dodgers could be headed for a depressing break-up of their own. 2011 prediction: 83-79, 3rd place NL West