Solid entertainment

Trouble with the Curve Warner Bros. Rating: PG 111 minutes

Despite all the ads on TV and despite Clint Eastwood’s bewildering appearance at the Republican covention, Trouble with the Curve still holds the odd surprise and the old pro turns in an enjoyable and solid performance.

Eastwood plays an old time baseball scout. He`s so good he can tell if a player has it or not by the sound his bat makes when it hits the ball. But his eyes are going, he’s starting to trip and bang up his car.

So, while he’s scouting out a hot prospect in North Carolina, his buddy (John Goodman) back at head office in Atlanta, gets Eastwood`s estranged daughter (Amy Adams) to show up and help him out. Eastwood’s contract is almost up and the young blood at head office, whom depends on computer statistics rather than experience in the field, says he’s over the hill.

Adams plays a lawyer up for partnership at her high level Atlanta lawfirm. But, like Eastwood, she knows more than most about baseball.

The father and daughter predictably butt heads, but they at least have baseball in common. Meanwhile Justin Timberlake, once spotted by Eastwood as a big league pitcher, shows up as a newby scout and falls for Adams.

This is a predictable movie, with by-the-numbers Hollywood plot twists. There are no surprises when the hot prospect turns out to have Trouble with the Curve ball, or the computer hotshot is wrong. But it’s all done so well. This is solid, appealing entertainment.

Rating: four deer out of five

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Alf Cryderman is a Red Deer freelance writer and old movie buff