2012 Certificate: 12


Clint Eastwood plays an ageing baseball scout who's given one last chance to sign a hotshot young batter before he's put out to graze. However, his eyesight is failing... and rival talent spotter Justin Timberlake looks set to beat him to the deal. It doesn't help that Clint's concerned daughter (Amy Adams) has invited herself along for the ride. Eastwood's longtime producing partner Robert Lorenz makes his directorial debut with this easy-going drama - a nicely taken home run for the old stager.


  • Robert Lorenz


  • Clint Eastwood

  • Amy Adams

  • Justin Timberlake

  • John Goodman

  • Robert Patrick


At the ripe old age of 82 the grizzly range of roles available for Clint's careworn old coffin-dodger are getting pretty few and far between.

He's ticked off knackered astronaut (Space Cowboys), over-the-hill detective (Blood Work), ageing boxing trainer (Million Dollar Baby) and grouchy widowed war veteran (Gran Torino).

In the latest triumph of grey power (and presumably cod liver oil), he plays Gus Lobel, a veteran baseball scout for the Atlanta Braves, a stubborn curmudgeon who has trouble with peeing and seeing.

Professionally, he's up against the algorithms of Moneyball fame and it's made plain by Matthew Lillard's slimy team executive that he's on the way out unless he can sign some successful new blood.

He's despatched to North Carolina to cast a (failing) eye over college prodigy Bo Gentry (Joe Massingil), an oafish, Augustus Gloop type who's effortlessly hitting balls all over the park.

Settling into low-budget motels and scruffy bars with his geriatric buddies, Gus couldn't be happier... until his daughter Mickey (Adams) turns up, primed by his buddy Pete (Goodman) that all's not well with the old codger.

She's a hotshot lawyer who's had to leave a career-advancing deal hanging...and isn't best pleased that her grumpy pop isn't obeying doctor's orders.

Eastwood's regular producing partner Robert Lorenz's directorial debut doesn't throw any curve balls of its own, preferring to play a straight bat of rigid formula.

Clint can do this sort of thing in his sleep (or, at least, afternoon nap) while Adams is always reliable, as is Justin Timberlake as the rival baseball scout who seduces Mickey with the irrisistible lure of a midnight swim in a pond.

It's viewing so comfortable it could have been directed from a bath chair but it guiltily charms with more corn than harvest time in the Midwest.

Tim Evans