The Bad News Bears

Michael Ritchie | 1976 | ★★★
In Ritchie’s enjoyably unsentimental sporting comedy, a washed-up, perma-drunk, small-time ballplayer (Walter Matthau) is hired to coach a talentless little league baseball team, but at first fails to invest any real effort into the role. However, before long he is not only heavily invested in the fates of the kids, but is taking things just that little bit too seriously. Though some of the plotting is a tad hackneyed and predictable, not to mention rushed in spots, the charm of the performances and the odd moment of irreverence here and there make it a generally pleasant viewing experience.