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The Bad News Bears

By Tom Keogh

This likable 1976 comedy gently skewers the whole post- Rocky mania for movies about losers who find their mettle or salvation or purpose in life in competitive sport. Walter Matthau stars as a drunk who becomes manager of a pathetic little-league baseball team. When he brings in a talented girl pitcher (Tatum O'Neal), the crew have an actual chance at winning some games and maybe a championship. But director Michael Ritchie (Downhill Racer) undercuts the romance of it all with the team's foul-mouthed tendencies and Matthau's own decadent spin on mentor-coachdom. Similarly to Ritchie's wicked comedy Smile --which lampooned the fervor surrounding beauty pageants--The Bad News Bears pokes fun at another American institution.

See Also: The Bad News Bears in "Breaking Training", The Bad News Bears Go To Japan

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Your Memories Shared!

"I saw this when it came out in the theaters, I was 8 at the time. It was great. I wanted to be just like Tanner. Oh yeah, Kelly was so cool."


"I still remember going to see this movie when I was 13. Whenever I need a dose of memory lane from my own little league years, I tune into this movie. It transports me back like a time machine. The clothes, the lingo, (" you spazz"), it had it all. Not to mention a great movie about a bunch of loveable underdogs."

--Johnnyboy 62

"This is possibly one of the greatest underdog movies of all time. Putting together a group of misfits, outcasts and nerds and making them believe in themselves is what America is all about."




Buy this VHS movie from! (Click here!)Buy this DVD from! (Click here!)Soundtrack unavailable at - try eBay (see links below)Rated PGNot on an American Film Institute 100 list

Director: Michael Ritchie

Stars: Walter Matthau, Tatum O'Neal, Vic Morrow, Joyce Van Patten, Jackie Earle Haley

Released: April 16, 1976

Availability: DVD VHS

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