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Field of Dreams is a movie that makes people realize that dreams can come true. Its overwhelming acceptance among many movie critics was absolutely wonderful. At times, there were reviews that stated that the movie was a little too sappy and that it was unrealistic. The realism of this movie is believing. If you do not believe, then your dreams will not be brought to life. This movie shows people what going after your wildest dreams is all about. There is heartbreak, there is sadness, there is disappointment, there are struggles, but, on the flip side, there is also happiness, awe, experiencing the unbelievable, and there are momentous wonderfuls that occur throughout the movie.

All in all, the critics of this movie mostly had great things to say about it. Its storyline was put together very well. The actors and actresses in the movie showed a real love for the topic on which the movie was based. It is a movie that even makes men cry, as well as women. Its ingredients call for a little of a chic flick and a heaping tablespoon of sports. It is a movie for men and women, equally. It is an amazing movie which celebrates the sport without sliding into awkward sentimentality. Field of Dreams is sweet--very sweet (Thomas Harrison, St. Petersburg Times).

Booth, Michael. Rev. of Field of Dreams, dir. Phil Alden Robinson. Denver Post 23 October 2007.
"The life-equals-baseball masterpiece still packs and unexpected kick, even after you know all its tricks and charms from repeat visits. Like all great sports movies, Field of Dreams isn't really about sports. It's about a quest, a yearning so deep it rules the characters' lives -- sports is just the handiest metaphor to make it vivid onscreen. . . . Field of Dreams gets the tears flowing year in and year out."
Carr, Jay. Rev. of Field of Dreams. Boston Globe 21 April 1989: 45.
Field of Dreams is not just another baseball movie. This movie "touches all bases," including metaphorical ones, connecting the national pastime of America, baseball, to love, dreams, healing and redemption. In the movie, "whimsy seems to be approaching faster than a Roger Clemens fastball." Director Robinson sweeps the viewers off their feet by taking them on a magical journey from the first sight of construction on the baseball field all the way to meeting baseball greats from 1919. The viewer is also able to be there for the moment when Ray Kinsella "unexpectedly confronts his father on the miraculous diamond and is moved by the sight of something he never saw before -- his father's face as a young dreamer." " It's the kind of movie where there are no pennant-winning home runs, and where nobody even keeps the score. But it plays for keeps."
Ebert, Roger. Rev. of Field of Dreams. Chicago Sun-Times 21 April 1989.
A film which is "completely sensible" up until Ray Kinsella starts hearing voices. It is a film that incorporates religion, the religion of baseball. This movie is daring because it is not afraid to "take flights of imagination." It is a Frank Capraesque movie. Ebert writes, "This is the kind of movie Frank Capra might have directed, and James Stewart might have starred in -- a movie about dreams."
Goddard, Peter. Rev. of Field of Dreams. Toronto Star 21 April 1989: D6.
"Field of Dreams is the first, unabashed, made-for-men, yuppie tear-jerker." Kevin Costner plays Ray Kinsella, an Iowa farmer who brings together for a blissed-out orgy of nostalgia his favorite dead ball player, favorite writer, favorite baseball statistic and favorite wish -- to make up with his late father." The clean talk and smell of baseball gloves is a common theme throughout the movie, especially the voice that Costner repeatedly hears. To make a dream come true, the Costner character builds a baseball field on to his farm, on which he brings back American pastime heroes. Along with Shoeless Joe Jackson, comes his father. "Go on, it says. Let down your guard. Put the ol' glove on and imagine playing catch with your dad again. Go on. Don't worry. It's okay to cry." "Indeed, Field of Dreams is the late 80's equivalent of Rocky -- its evolution almost."
Howe, Desson. Rev. of Field of Dreams, dir. Phil Alden Robinson. Washington Post 21 April 1989.
"There's supposed to be magic in Field of Dreams. At least that's what the characters keep talking about. . . . Dreams is a delicious idea for the baseball fans and the dreamers among us -- a sort of ‘It's a Wonderful Game.' But that idea, Costner's happy-go-lucky manner and Jones' authoritative support (as a recluse writer—and black spinoff of the novel's J.D. Salinger) are the only things holding Dreams together. The movie may steal a base here and there, but there are no real homers." Howe's review contrasts the majority of other mainstream stances, suggesting that the film lacks depth and criticizing director Robinson for not employing some of the "industrial-strength magic" similar to the effects being used in the Spielberg and George Lucas films.
Jacobson, Harlan. "Shot in the Dark: Born Again Baseball." Film Comment May 1989: 78-79.
Jacobson writes about how director Phil Alden Robinson "has taken up Shoeless Joe's case and put it to absolutely startling use. He has made him Him." He goes on to write about how Costner, an ex-sixties activist, could bring about the return of the days when baseball was an innocent game. Those days are commonly referred to as "white baseball days." Field of Dreams is a movie that cleanses the humiliations of baseball and its scandals as well as the humiliations of the 1960's. Jacobson ends the article with a funny blurb about baseball and its scandals. He writes, "Perhaps like the movies, baseball will enact a Rating System for the players -- you know, little letters the guys can wear below their numbers. X for sex; R for Retching tobacco juice; PG for Party Going; PGP for Party Going where people are petting; and G for Gambling. That way we won't have to learn new letters, and our kids will be safe."
James, Caryn. "A Baseball Diamond Becomes the Stuff of Dreams." Rev. of Field of Dreams. New York Times 21 April 1989: C8.
"Field of Dreams goes to the heart of a work so smartly written, so beautifully filmed, so perfectly acted, that it does the almost impossible trick of turning sentimentality into true emotion." By building a baseball field on his farm in Iowa,Costner recalls from the past American icons such as Shoeless Joe Jackson. Ray Kinsella (Costner) and his wife, Annie are people with mild nostalgia in search of a more passionate thing, an American ideal, and a dream. "Mr. Costner does not make one false move"; he plays a role in which his sturdiness shines throughout the movie, all the while being fully backed up by his wife and by his daughter. This story is a modern-day version of a heroic Jimmy Stewart that is brought into the 1980's. It is a movie in which "a baseball diamond becomes the stuff of dreams."
Kempley, Rita. "Field of Dreams: Bonkers over Baseball." Rev. of Field of Dreams. Washington Post 21 April 1989: C1.
What better setting can there be for a ghostly baseball story than a cornfield in the middle of Iowa? "This is the myth of peanuts and Cracker Jacks, ball play as next to God, and Shoeless Joe Jackson as archangel." It deals with the 1919 Black Sox scandal, "the year the Chicago White Sox threw the World Series to the Cincinnati Reds. Field of Dreams chooses to redeem Shoeless Joe Jackson in his after-life. "Everything from time travel to melodrama figures in this whimsically daft story, a romanticization that tries your patience even as your tear ducts well. It is, after all, hard to resist the notion that America's pastime is God's game of choice: The Lord is my umpire."
Travers, Peter. Review of Field of Dreams. Rolling Stone 21 April 1989.
"To be honest, I started hearing things, too. Just when Jones was delivering an inexcusably sappy speech about baseball being 'a symbol of all that was once good in America,' I heard the words 'If he keeps talking, I'm walking.' Okay, it was just some disgruntled smartass behind me. But as Dreams drags on, that voice remains one well worth taking to heart."
Wilmington, Michael. "Sacrifices On A Field of Dreams." Rev. of Field of Dreams. Los Angeles Times 21 April 1989: 1.
"Field of Dreams is a movie about crazy dreams and impossible reunions, and it presents baseball as a kind of national sacrament, the instrument of near-holy reconciliation between the generations." Ray Kinsella hears voices saying things like, "If you build it, he will come." The question that Wilmington poses is, "is the movie a Christ fable, a sports comedy, or both?" In this film, director Robinson makes a movie in which people go after their dreams, trying to recapture the past. This movie is about two young kids, Kinsella and his wife Annie, trying to "find their way back to their conservative parents via the common ground of baseball." "The movie tries to dispel cynicism or doubts, by ignoring the world around it, serving up its magic pure and raw. And, if you want it, it will come."

See Also

Denby, David. "Soft Ball." New York 24 April 1989: 96-97.

Fitch, Janet. "Screenings: Field of Dreams." American Film May 1989: 62.

Kael, Pauline. "The Current Cinema Fascination." New Yorker 1 May 1989: 75.

Kauffmann, Stanley. "Fake Me Out to the Ball Game." New Republic 8 May 1989: 26-27.

Wulf, Steve. "Diamond in the Rough." Sports Illustrated 1 May 1989: 81.