Some movies should not be revisited.
Some kiddie movies can last beyond childhood; they are the special ones, the ones that you can come back to time and again, and they always retain that magic you witnessed in your youth.
For me, two standouts are “Bedknobs and Broomsticks” and Shirley Temple’s “The Blue Bird,” but it really doesn’t matter which ones made the cut. What matters is that for the length of the film, a piece of your childhood comes back to life and you are young again.
But, then there are those other movies, that had magic when you were young, but when you look at them with adult eyes, you can’t go back. All the flaws are right there in the open and you cannot brush them aside. The movie is forever tainted by your growing wisdom.
Unfortunately, “The Sandlot” falls into the second category.
I saw it with my cousin when I was fourteen, and I really liked it; it was a good baseball-and-kids story that for once didn’t center around the big game.
But then I had to go and watch it this past week. There are too many characters, too many improbable (and let’s face it, impossible) situations and too many moments that just make the adult in me cringe.
“The Sandlot” had a lot going for it; a solid setup about a lonely boy in a new town who finds himself on a baseball team (when he doesn’t know how to play); a likeable enough cast; and an unconventional approach to a sports movie.
It all goes downhill from there. I want to remember this movie fondly, but the adult in me can’t find the childhood glee. It’s all gone.
“The Sandlot” (1993)
Written by David M. Evans and Robert Gunter
Directed by David M. Evans
Starring: Scotty Smalls (Tom Guiry)
Benny (Mike Vitar)