September 19, 2012

It’s not just about baseball…

Posted in Between Us column, Movies, Relationships, Women at 11:32 pm by dinaheng

If there’s one kind of story most people will relate to, it’s a father-daughter tale. Every woman, after all, has a father, and while not all men are fathers, they know what it’s like to have one.

“Trouble with the Curve” is not only a terrific father-daughter story, it’s spun around the business of baseball in a way that everyone can relate to, whether you’re a fan of the sport or not. Because at its heart, this family drama is about dealing with change — changes in life’s stages and changes in the world as we know it.

Clint Eastwood stars as Gus Lobel, one of the best scouts in baseball, who is starting to deal with the physical affects of aging, and the technology that is changing the way players are rated and picked. His daughter Mickey, played by Amy Adams, is a high-powered lawyer who’s never been close to her dad, or any man.

Helping to bring the two together is rival scout Johnny Flanagan (Justin Timberlake), who’s grappling with his own career changes, as well.

“All our priorities change over time, so it’s a constant process of maintaining the right balance,” says director/producer Robert Lorenz, a prolific filmmaker who’s earned two Academy Award nominations as Eastwood’s producer for “Mystic River” and “Letters from Iwo Jima.”

“There’s an ongoing battle between the new way of doing things, and the old way of doing things. We have to learn to balance technology with wisdom and experience.”

In “Trouble with the Curve,” Gus tries to hide the changes in his health and prefers to scout potential players the old-fashioned way, paying no attention to what computerized stats indicate. When his boss and longtime friend Pete Klein (John Goodman) asks Mickey if her father’s okay, she decides to take some time off and join Gus on a scouting trip, putting her own career promotion in jeopardy.

“One aspect of their relationship that’s timely to what’s happening in society today is the role reversal,” says Lorenz, who’s making his feature-film directorial debut with this film. “Your parents have taken care of you, and the time will come when you’ll have to take care of them. This applies to both men and women. If you maintain an open line of communication, it’ll be an easier transition than if you haven’t addressed issues between you before.”

Throughout life, we struggle to balance health, career, and relationships. Throw in factors like changes in technology, world events, and politics, and the only status quo that exists is constant change.

“Life throws you a curve, and you’ve got to deal with it,” Lorenz says. “We’re constantly re-evaluating how we’re doing things. You find a comfortable place to be, then you have to change, which makes life challenging.”

The characters in “Trouble with the Curve” face their challenges in ways that just might give you some ideas on how to meet your own. Now wouldn’t that be a home run?

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