Considered one of the greatest sports movies ever made, The Natural is mostly remembered for its iconic shot of a home run hitting a lightpost, with electricity sizzling and flying as Robert Redford rounds the bases. This is more than just that one shot, though; this is a love letter to everything baseball. If you’re a fan of the game, this film has everything you could want in a baseball movie, and then some.
The cinematography is the winning shot here. The whole film has a bronzed glow about it, like the amber waves of the wheat fields that surround Roy Hobbs’ childhood home. All the cast feel perfectly, well, natural (sorry, unavoidable pun) in their roles, and Robert Redford is the perfect leading man to carry the story, and does his job with ease. What really wins us over and transports us into the film’s mindset is the score, which is pervasive and threaded throughout the whole backbone of the film from start to finish.
The whole film is rather idealistic, and some may say that it suffers from an unrealistic storyline and portrayals, but come on, this is movies; movie magic is a big thing going for this film, and many others, and it just wouldn’t be the same medium if everything were super realistic. Thankfully, this stays grounded and within the bounds of the film and story’s universe, so it can afford to be a little rosy with how it pulls the story off. As long as you are of the right kind of mind to lose yourself to a story being told, you’ll find this a grand tale and quite the experience to have.
Arbitrary Rating: 8/10