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Hardball Review

Other Critics provided by Metacritic.com

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0
    48

    out of 100

    Metascore®
    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 25

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    The movie is so littered with clichés of genre, as well as clichés of artifice in Reeves' pained performance, that any semblance of social reality goes foul.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Mark Caro

    Remains watchable when it's not hitting you like a baseball bat with poignancy. But by the time you've endured all of the shamelessly manipulative plot turns and heart-yanking speeches that close out the movie, all you can do is cry foul.

    Read Full Review

  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Those who were upset by the tragic ending of last year's "Pay It Forward" should be warned away.

    Read Full Review

  • 63

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    It drifts above the surface of its natural subjects, content to be a genre picture. We're always aware of the formula--and in a picture based on real life, we shouldn't be.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Hardball reviews at Metacritic.com

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 13+

This umpire calls Hardball out at first base.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie includes very strong language, including many four-letter words used by children. The boys are surrounded by drug use and gang violence. They can identify the weapon by the sound of the shooting and take it for granted that they must sit on the floor to be out of the way of gunfire that might come in the window. One child is badly beaten and another is killed. Also, this film was originally intended to be released as an R, due to the language used by the children. The producers argued that it was an authentic portrayal of the urban setting. Protests during the filming, and, more significantly, marketing concerns about whether the audience really wanted an R-rated movie about a little league team, led them to cut some of the worst language to obtain a PG-13 rating. Yet the movie still has some material, including the gang shooting of a child, that is far more likely to be upsetting to younger audiences than a few four-letter words.

  • Families can talk about how the children helped Conor realize that he needed to make some changes. Why was it important that Conor made a rule that the players could not insult each other? What did Conor learn from G-Baby? What do you think will happen to the members of the team when they get too old to play in the league?

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: Child shot and killed, another child badly beaten, gang violence.

  • sex false0

    Sex: Not an issue

  • language false4

    Language: Very strong language, most of it used by children.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Drug use, scenes in bar, drinking, smoking.

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