Don't Hold Back
As a child Cory Brand (Scott Elrod - Stolen Child) suffered the abuse of an alcoholic father who having once been a baseball player wanted him to be one too. And it worked as Cory makes it to the big time but like his father has developed a drink problem which after a string of public embarrassments leads to a full scale blow up in the middle of a game. Suspended and forced to attend a rehab programme, Cory ends up returning home to his brother Clay's (James Devoti) where his agent not only arranges for him to attend a rehab programme at a church but also arranges for him to help coach the little league team, something which brings back in to touch with former girlfriend Emma (Dorian Brown Pham).
I don't know whether I should laugh or cry but I read an opinion on "Home Run" from someone who went to watch it unaware that this has a strong Christian side to the story and then dismissed it because of that. Look I understand that God, church and the bible is not everyone's cup of tea but "Home Run" is a powerful movie even if you don't do the sort of movies which are labelled Christian Cinema. Here is a story of a man dealing with his demons, learning to understand himself and moving forwards with his life and doing the right thing with a sense of humility.
Now ignoring that "Home Run" has a Christian side to the story and on first glance it might seem like another sports movie which plays on a "Bad News Bears" style story where he you have a troubled man forced to coach little children and learning as much from them as they do from him. But "Home Run" is packed full of depth as we get to see Cory change and confront the demon which has controlled his life, his hatred of his father who he holds responsible for anything bad which happens to him, including when it comes to being an alcoholic himself. As such what you get in "Home Run" is the transformation of a man who instead of blaming others takes responsibility for what happens to him, taking it one day at a time.
So there is of course that Christian side to "Home Run" as it all starts with Cory having to attend sessions run by a church where all sorts of people with issues from drug addiction to having had suicidal thoughts due to abuse attend and help each other. Now compared to some Christian movies "Home Run" is not heavy but it does build to its message of asking God for help and trusting in Him. The thing is that what we also get is to listen to the Serenity Prayer being recited and when you listen to the words they are mighty powerful as a guide for living your life whether as a Christian or not.
It is also worth mentioning that "Home Run" owes a lot to Scott Elrod as he delivers a captivating performance. We go from watching Cory as the big star with a big ego but at the same time a sense of self-loathing which he tries buries deep when it comes to his drinking problem. Yet slowly Elrod evolves Cory giving us the rocky road of redemption. He also brings just enough charm to the role to make COry likeable with out being too nice, allowing the flaws in his character's personality to come through.
What this all boils down to is that "Home Run" is more than just another piece of Christian Cinema, it is a powerful movie with a very strong message which even if you don't believe in God is worth listening to.
Tags: Baseball Movies