Clint Eastwood hated Moneyball. At least, that's the biggest thing we can take away from the trailer for Clint Eastwood's latest movie, Trouble with the Curve. Eastwood lazily played with a bowl of popcorn while watching Moneyball alone. He was too offended by Brad Pitt's stupid assertions that old guys didn't know anything about baseball to eat anything. "I'll show this kid," he said. He was so worked up he paid a guy named Randy Brown to write a script about the old baseball scouts he grew up admiring as a kid. He wanted to snarl things like, "You don't know anything about the game. A computer can't tell if a kid's got instincts," at the sharply dressed, WHIP-VORP-QWRK human calculator played by Matthew Lillard, in what's easily his biggest role since his critically acclaimed performance in The Descendants. Curve's plot is almost identical to Moneyball's: a veteran baseball scout's job is in jeopardy while he fights to win the affection of his daughter who he's never had a great relationship with. Add 30 years to the characters, Eastwood on the other side of the table of Pitt's Billy Beane, and a Justin Timberlake romance plot for good measure and you've got a September date movie for the same 50 year-old couples who loved Moneyball so much. Seriously, when we saw Moneyball everyone else in the theater was a couple over 55.
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Look, we love that baseball movies are making a resurgence. It's a fickle game, so it's the great lesson deliverer for any script writer if used properly. (See: Durham, Bull; Dreams, Field of.) Movies about baseball scouts or front offices should not become a thing, though. We better not get a movie about a young major league general manager trying to find love next year, but someone will pay Robert Downey Jr. a zillion dollars and it'll happen and we'll hold our DVD copy of Bull Durham and cry. This game is supposed to be fun, goddamnit.
A note: Eastwood didn't actually pay Brown to write this movie. That notion is silly and should only be taken seriously on the craziest of Moneyball conspiracy theory message boards.