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Take Me Out To The Ball Game Blu-ray Review

“Take Me Out To The Ball Game” will appeal to musical lovers.

1949’s “Take Me Out To The Ball Game” is a baseball movie/musical that revolves around Dennis Ryan and Eddie O’Brien who are pro baseball players for the Wolves and vaudevillian performers in the offseason. Upon returning back to the Wolves for baseball season, the team discovers that they are under new ownership by a young woman named K.C. Higgins who inherited the team. At first, the ladies man Eddie clashes with K.C., but soon finds himself falling for her and vice versa. Likewise, Dennis has feelings for K.C., but another woman (Shirley) has eyes for Dennis. Elsewhere in the story, a seedy criminal (Joe Lorgan) wants to fix the Wolves game and decides to use Eddie in order to do that. 

“Take Me Out To The Ball Game” is a perfect movie for summer. It’s a baseball story, it’s a grand musical with song and dance numbers, and it’s good old fashioned American cinematic entertainment. It’s a light and fluffy story without much depth that certainly isn’t on the level of Sinatra and Kelly collabs like “On The Town,” but so what? With the level of talent involved, you likely won’t care. Not only do you have Busby Berkeley directing, but Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly both staged the musical numbers and created the story. On top of that, you have an all-star cast comprised of Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, Esther Williams, Betty Garrett, and Jules Munshin. 

On the subject of the cast, Sinatra shines as the shy romantic alongside the utterly charming Betty Garrett. Granted, Garrett’s character doesn’t have much to do (we learn little about her), but she owns the screen every single time she’s on it. Esther Williams makes the part of K.C. her own. She even gets a swimming scene! Jules Munshin doesn’t have the biggest role but he steals scenes as a baseball player and friend of Eddie and Dennis named Goldberg. Usually I’m a big Kelly fan and while he does have a few show stopping moments like “The Hate My Dear Father Wore Upon St. Patrick’s Day” tap dancing sequence, his character is a rather off putting sexist jerk in this.

As this is a musical, you can expect a number of winning tunes like classic titular song, the earworm “It’s Fate Baby, It’s Fate” and the fourth wall breaking “Strictly U.S.A.” 

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.37:1 1080p. How does it look? This Technicolor classic looks jaw dropping in hi-def. I couldn’t believe how crisp the colors looked here. One of the very best prints of the year to be sure.

Audio Track: 2.0 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? Another clean sounding Mono track courtesy of Warner Archive.

Extras include 2 deleted musical numbers (“Baby Doll” and “Boys And Girls Like You And Me”), a song selection option, an MGM cartoon titled “The Cat And The Mermouse” and a theatrical trailer for “Take Me Out To The Ball Game.”

July 31, 2021 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , ,

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