Movie Review: Rookie of the Year (1993)

by StevenHelmer

A review of the 1993 sports movie starring Thomas Ian Nicholas and Gary Busey.

Synopsis: Following a fluke accident, a 12-year-old Chicago Cubs fan's tendons heal a little too tightly and, as a result, he gains an extraordinary ability to throw a baseball. When he is signed by the Cubs in a desperate attempt to sell tickets, he quickly becomes a star and befriends an aging pitcher who takes him under his wing.


My wife had to work last night and, as is usually the case, ended up looking for a movie to watch while waiting up for her. There wasn't much to choose from so I settled on this particular film, mostly because I didn't remember much about it.

As I started watching the movie, I started to have doubts about my choice because it seemed to be a bit too "family-friendly" for my tastes. However, it turned out to be a good film.

The thing I found I liked about this movie was the way it focused on being a fun film rather than trying to focus on teaching some sort of life lesson (as is usually the case with movies like this). Yes, there were still some subtle messages about how young boys need their moms and how important friendship is. But, the movie primarily focused on his talented arm, being part of a professional baseball team and the various twists associated with those.

I also found I was surprisingly impressed with Gary Busey as his aging pitching mentor, Chet "Rocket" Steadman. I'm not a big Busey fan normally, but he was actually pretty solid in this film, especially as a fill-in father figure for Henry (Nicholas).

Some parts of this movie were a little predictable. For example, I figured Henry's new success would cause some strain between him and his friends. Plus, I found it hard to trust his manager (Altman), because I figured his greed would eventually get the best of him. 

However, there were also some parts of the movie, including during Henry's last game, that did have some interesting twists. And, as a result of that, while there were predictable moments, as I said, the ending of the film wasn't nearly as predictable as I expected it to be. The movie was much more enjoyable as a result.

Final Opinion

As I said, I had some doubts about this movie when I first started watching it. However, it turned out to be a fun and entertaining movie and I would recommend it as a result.

My Grade: A

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Updated: 07/15/2016, StevenHelmer
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