Kevin Costner, Susan Surandon and Tim Robbins star in the baseball/love story of rookie ball player Calvin “Nuke” LaLoosh as he struggles to find his way in the big game with help from veteran Crash Davis.
Film making 22/25
Bonus Features 5/25
“Crash” Davis is given one last hurrah in his career when he is sent down to the even lower minor leagues to help rookie Nuke LaLoosh find his way to the big leagues. Sounds complicated but it actually works out well for all involved but mostly for the owner of the team that sees the potential in Calvin LaLoosh as a major league pitcher.
Kevin Costner plays Crash Davis who has been in the minor leagues but at the top of that leagues classification while Nuke LaLoosh is struggling in the lowest class of the minors, the single A. Susan Surandon plays Annie, a single woman who chases a single player of the Bull Durham baseball team and is blessed with a life philosophy that works for her.
When she takes on a player of each new season she sleeps and helps them spiritually during their season to bring them the luck and needed skill to make it to the bigs. In the past everyone who Annie has given her special attention to for the season has moved on to the major leagues and it has become a yearly ritual.
Crash and Nuke meet at Annie’s when she asks both to come by her place so she can pick who it will be that she mentors for the new year. Crash refuses to be part of her ritual and gives his memorable things he loves about baseball speech which strikes a chord in her heart.
Crash and Annie help Nuke throughout the first half of the season to straighten out his fast ball and make him a valuable pitcher to the team and himself. During this time Crash has fallen for Annie but Annie is sticking to Nuke to help him achieve his status in the major leagues.
By the end of the season Nuke is called up to the majors and shortly thereafter Crash is let go as his job of mentoring Nuke has come to an end. The coach of The Durham Bulls tells Crash he has a potential job as a coach with another team but Crash can only see himself as a player.
Crash gets a position on another team and winds up breaking the minor league career home run record before retiring and heading back to Durham. Annie gets together with Crash and he says he wants to look into being a coach for another team.
We get a last look at Nuke as he tells the press some answers to common questions that Crash coached him on when he was prepping Nuke for his trip to the majors. One thing I like about Bull Durham that is seriously lacking in many other sports related films, the team does not win the big game at the end.
Bull Durham is a great film and really a testament to what can be achieved in a film when the players all decide to take matters into their own hands and give their all. From the first idea of the film and only the one studio who wished to chance their luck on a baseball romantic comedy to the actual filming they took a risk.
The risk paid off with a film that has achieved its notoriety and place in film history as one of those films to capture that elusive magical something that makes films great. Bull Durham is about baseball and uses baseball as its center stage but the characters are the main theme, they even left out any major game in the end of the film and no big sports trophy.
The love of baseball and to become what each wants and the dialogue between them is what makes the film great and the baseball only adds to the charm and nostalgia of the film. The love story of baseball and of people also adds to the films charm and character so they really had everything fall into place aided by the comedy.
Bull Durham is well worth the purchase as it is all about a love for each other and the laughs that these loves bring in everyday. Video and audio look and sound great for a film shot when Blu-ray was not even a dream for technology minded individuals.
Video is good but not great but when you consider the fact this film was shot in the 1980’s you can understand the lack of great quality video. Picture is clear for the most part but hazy in some scenes to the point of being almost out of focus but when compared to the DVD is not that much better.
From a standpoint of Blu-ray this film is not the best out there and is somewhat better than the standard DVD version but not much more. Audio is pretty good, surround sound and bass are also pretty good but again not all that great so the quality is a mixed bag for the Blu-ray.
With the 9 million dollar budget better quality would have been expected but for some reason it was not for even the standard DVD version so the Blu-ray is a disappointment of sorts. With the lack of bonus content, utter lack of anything on the Blu-ray disc, the standard DVD version of past editions is pretty much just as good as this release.
The Blu-ray has nothing but two trailers for other films and one for this, huh?, but the DVD disc that the Blu-ray edition comes with has about an hour of extras. The DVD is the same as the collector’s edition DVD released in 2008 so if you have this edition the Blu-ray is nothing to get excited about.
Bonus content on the DVD includes audio commentaries, and making of features as well as a look into the modern day minor leagues. Extras are worth it and this edition with its Blu-ray and standard DVD makes a good purchase if you do not have the film or have not seen it.
If you have never seen Bull Durham a rental is a must and this makes a great film for a collection but the Blu-ray edition is not really that great. You may be better off purchasing the standard DVD 2008 collector’s edition if you can find it for a cheaper price.