Dinesh (Madhur Mittal, left) and Rinku (Suraj Sharma) win the Million Dollar Arm contest in India.
Here is a sports movie with spiritual messages. JB Bernstein is a driven sports agent who comes up with an out-of-the-box plan to save his failing agency. He convinces a Chinese multimillionaire to finance a trip to India so he can find new baseball players and, hopefully, also get up to a billion fans for the sport. They bring back to Los Angeles two gifted 18-year-old athletes. Along the way Bernstein must give up his narcissism, his pursuit of money and fame, and operate under a different set of values.
Director Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl) and screenwriter Tom McCarthy (The Station Agent and Win Win) have embedded meaningful themes in the movie, including the importance of community, the blessings of friendship, and the lessons that can be learned from struggle. The superb cast, led by Jon Hamm, Lake Bell and Alan Arkin, infuse even the melodramatic moments of this saga with memorable impact (Walt Disney Pictures, PG — mild language, suggestive content).
© 2015 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers