Review: 61* on Blu-Ray
by Brian Capozzi
HBO recently gave me an incredible opportunity to review the Billy Crystal directed baseball movie 61* which was released on HBO in 2001. If you have not had the chance to see this movie yet, I need to ask you, what are you waiting for? From one diehard Yankee fan to another, this is by far my favorite baseball movie. Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris were in a heated race throughout the entire 1961 season while chasing the home run record of 60 set by Babe Ruth in 1927. Thomas Jane plays Mickey Mantle and does a phenomenal job playing my favorite Yankee. From the late night drinking in New York City, to the women, to the heroics on the field… it’s all documented in this film in a way that doesn’t make him out to be a horrible guy. It’s done in a respectful way. Barry Pepper plays Roger Maris, and I don’t think Billy Crystal could have picked anyone else to play him. From his athletic looks, to the fact that he looks like Roger Maris’ twin, Barry Pepper made this movie as good as it is! The pressure from the media, and the fans who wanted Mantle to break the record, you can’t help but feel the pain endured by Maris throughout the season. The acting was great, the way the game was played looked authentic… not like it was being played by actors with no baseball experience.
While the movie was released 10 years ago, HBO has recently re-released the movie in blu-ray for those baseball fans who have this new technology. Please take my word, whether you are a Yankee fan or not, you will absolutely love this movie! While the story follows two Yankee greats throughout the entire 1961 season, this record, the fact they were chasing the king of all baseball players, it took the entire country by storm. If you enjoy baseball, and you haven’t seen this movie, I highly recommend you make the purchase. I have seen the movie when it was on HBO, on DVD, and on blu-ray. The quality of the HD picture from the Blu-Ray video is fantastic. You won’t regret it!
If you are interested in purchasing the movie, you can check out the following link:
61* on Blu-Ray from HBO.com
Image courtesy of HBO.com