Time: 107 mins.
Academy Award nominations for Best Score, Adapted Screenplay and Best Picture.
SYNOPSIS: An Iowa farmer follows the directives of a mysterious voice that tells him to build a baseball diamond in his cornfield, upon which appears the ghosts of Shoeless Joe Jackson and the other seven Chicago White Sox players banned from the game for throwing the 1919 World Series. When the voices continue, Ray seeks out a reclusive author to help him understand the meaning of the messages and the purpose for his field.
BOTTOM LINE: As ridiculous as the plot of this film is, Costner and company are so earnest and enchanting they make you take the craziness to heart. While the ultimate reason for Ray Kinsella to plow under his corn field and build a baseball diamond is horrifyingly hokey, the road to get there is filled with such joy, magic and pathos, you honestly won't care...and will probably find yourself shedding a tear or two. Granted, those who don't like Costner or baseball, may be hard-pressed to enjoy this film. However, here, the game is merely a metaphor, representing lost opportunities and tough choices, about finding the magic in everyday things and being a part of something greater than yourself.
Costner strikes the perfect balance between belief and incredulity, unable to stop himself in an effort to shed the regrets of his past and find a better future. While the film centers on his quest, it's a mystical joyride filled with great characters (Jones and Lancaster truly shine) and clever humor. When it finds itself back in reality issues with the bank over the farm it loses its' momentum and heart, though those sequences are needed to give his quest depth and consequences. Ultimately, it's a film you'll never forget and will get sucked into again and again...as long as you're willing to buy into the fantasy.