Parents' Guide to

The Natural

By Peter Albert, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

Sappy baseball movie has violence, emotional intensity.

Movie PG 1984 134 minutes
The Natural Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 11+

So many other better baseball films...

Preposterous and difficult to embrace. Trying to purport that this is the film for the every man having to deal with bad luck and once in a lifetime circumstances, but only comes out feeling Hollywood manufactured with no basis in the "everyman" experience. Perhaps it has a place in the pantheon of sports films and in the subgenre of baseball films, but I would argue it would be in the fantasy baseball film genre. And by fantasy I mean full on fantastic feats and where to find them.
age 13+

Good movie

I'm surprised that in the language section there is no mention of the word G..D .... used twice towards the end of the movie. It's like people don't think taking the Lord's name invane is considered swearing anymore. It would have been a great movie if they hadn't used the Lord's names invane! It was totally unnecessary!

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5 ):
Kids say (5 ):

Off the field, the dialogue is often inexplicable and women, in general, are trouble. Barbara Hershey and Kim Basinger play femme fatales, and Glenn Close is Hobbs' reticent lady in white. Each are given complexity to flesh out character, but some scenes fall head-scratchingly flat: the true trouble stemming from the strain of forcing legend into a modern script.

Still, The Natural has iconic moments (Glenn Close in the stadium under a sunlit halo of a hat, and the cascading shards of popping stadium lights), and is off-kilter enough to temper much of the sentimentality. Baseball fans will appreciate that this movie is at its most intelligent and loosest in the ballpark, where happily, Redford and Levinson are also most comfortable. The lead's unwavering integrity is the movie's heart: The Natural does not glamorize vice but triumphs over it with a wholesome finale.

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