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Sandlot: Heading Home, The (DVD Review)

29 Apr, 2007 By: John Latchem

Sandlot 3

Street 5/1/07
$26.98 DVD
Rated ‘PG' for language and some rude humor.
Stars Luke Perry, Danny Nucci, Sarah Deakins, Keanu Pires, Chauncey Leopardi, Paul Jarrett, Alexander Ludwig.

This movie should come with a disclaimer, just so kids don't get the wrong idea about a few things:

1. Getting knocked out with a blow to the head will not send you back in time.

2. You cannot decide to change Little League teams in the middle of the season because another team offers you a better opportunity, or switch back simply because you don't like your coach.

3. It is never a good idea to use an autographed baseball in a real game, even for luck.

4. A fake mustache with gray highlights cannot make Danni Nucci look 55 years old.

While the first two “Sandlot” movies involved the neighborhood kids recovering something from a dog, this third installment strays from the formula with a plot that oddly combines The Natural with Back to the Future and The Wizard of Oz.

Director William Dear is no stranger to family friendly baseball flicks, with the 1994 fantasy Angels in the Outfield under his belt.

A cocky veteran Major League ballplayer (Perry) is hit in the head during batting practice and wakes up as a kid in 1976. Young Tommy (Pires) takes up with the sandlot gang to help save their beloved field from a greedy developer.

Tommy has some concerns about how he will get noticed by a prep-school recruiter (played by ESPN's John Kruk in a cameo), which eventually led to him turning pro, but he discovers destiny isn't always in the details. As expected, Tommy learns the value of teamwork, friendship and playing for the love of the game.

The movie throws in some time-travel jokes and a depressing subplot about Tommy's mother dying from cancer. There are a few more plot points that would cause anyone older than 10 or so to raise a few questions, which seems strange since this sequel clearly hopes to attract older fans of the 1993 original by including the characters of Benny and Squints, who coach the new sandlot team. (Also, a two-pack of the new movie and the original is offered at $34.98.)

The Heading Home DVD includes a few cute behind-the-scenes featurettes and an interview with former pitcher Goose Gossage.

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