Trying to catch up with Linklater. His big-budget movies usually retain enough character to make them worthwhile (cf. School of Rock), but this remake rides almost entirely on Billy Bob Thornton’s recycled Bad Santa shtick, and it’s not enough. The kids are bland, the pacing’s off, and the movie fizzles. The best I can say about is that it taught me more about baseball than all 16 hours of Ken Burns, but that’s not saying much.

Bad News Bears. Richard Linklater, 2005. **

[tags]richard linklater, film, children, baseball, sports, 2 stars, billy bob thornton[/tags]