I cancelled my Netflix subscription back in February after binging on the second season of House of Cards (twice) thinking that I could hold off until next February before I had a good enough reason to drop another hard-earned $8.99. But The Battered Bastards of Baseball lured me in like a sharp slider to Alfonso Soriano. Damn you Netflix and your compelling original content!
From the start, I was hooked on the idea of a documentary about a rowdy gang of rejects turning the 1970s baseball establishment on it’s ear. That was before I even realized it centered around a favorite actor of mine, Kurt Russell, and his family. I’ve been a fan of his since I was a kid, seeing him in all sorts of ’80s classics like The Thing and Big Trouble in Little China, but his awesomely over-the-top portrayal of an aging stuntman serial killer in Death Proof took my fandom to a whole new level. Little did I know that Russell was once a pro ballplayer and his father Bing (there really aren’t enough Bings around these days, are there?) was a pioneering minor league baseball owner in Oregon. Having worked in minor league baseball for the last seven years one could safely say my interest in Bastards was more than piqued.
There are plenty more qualified blowhards out there who can give you complete synopses and better critiques of the film than I, so I won’t waste your time with my review. But I will say this: if you give two shits about baseball (and I’m guessing you do if you’ve stumbled upon this dumb blog), you NEED to see this flick. Odds are you’re probably one of the 40 million+ Netflix subscribers out there, but if you’re not and If you don’t have the $8.99 to spare, you can always scam them with their free first-month trial and cancel after you watched it. Then chalk another one up for the anti-establishment.