Movie Review: 42

By Corlan Joubert ’20

Movies based on real-life people and events during a time of racial injustice or social inequalities are the movies people will watch and possibly shed a tear. Director of 42, Brian Helgeland, did an amazing job of portraying not only what is like as a regular black person but also as an African American athlete to play in what had been in an exclusively white sport.

The movie 42 staring Chadwick Boseman as baseball legend Jackie Robinson and Harrison Ford as Branch Rickey is a truly heartfelt and moving film that scored an eighty percent on Rotten Tomatoes and earning an average of 4 stars from other movie critics.

Rickey is the Brooklyn Dodgers manager who recruited Robinson to become the first African American to play in an otherwise all-white professional baseball league.

The film does a great job of emphasizing the volume of racism during the time period, 1947. And there is no better scene that shows this than the scene of Ben Chapman heckling Robinson. In this scene Chapman, a player for the Philadelphia Phillies, continuously called Robinson racial slurs while he was up to bat, throwing Robinson off his game. After the second time he was heckled, Robinson went into the stairwell of the dugout and shattered his bat in frustration. Branch Rickey came down and had to calm down Robinson enough so that he could go back onto the field. The third time Robinson was up to bat heckling from Chapman started but was then but to an end by Robinson’s teammate Stanky, who got in the face of Chapman telling him to stop. This scene showed the beginning of the end of segregation of whites and blacks in sports.

All in all, 42 is a fantastic movie that every baseball fan should watch, including  African American young men who have the dream to play major league baseball. This movie has a little something for everyone.