The career of every filmmaker and actor, if they sustain any longevity, is peppered with various levels of success and failure. And while he’s had greater successes in other films and genres, among the films for which Kevin Costner is most warmly remembered are a quartet of sports movies — Bull Durham, For Love of the Game, Tin Cup and of course the iconic Field of Dreams, celebrating its 25th anniversary later this very month.
Affectionate reminiscences of that filmography inform director Ivan Reitman’s new dramedy, Draft Day. But the more recent and germane comparison may be Moneyball, another smart, nuanced and confident sports film that didn’t chase the drama of on-field action, but instead used its sport as a backdrop for a complicated, adult tale of striving and innovation. Draft Day isn’t nearly in the same class, and its aims are a notch or two lower — it’s less a disquisition on beta-masculinity than an engaging extension of the National Football League brand. But it works far more than it doesn’t, connecting with pleasure and heart. For the full, original review, from Paste, click here. (Lionsgate/Summit, PG-13, 110 minutes)