Damn Yankees (1958)


“One long ball hitter, that’s what we need! I’d sell my soul for one long ball hitter” – Joe Boyd

Number of Times Seen – 1 (10 Mar 2019)

Brief Synopsis – A baseball fanatic makes a deal with the Devil to help make his team win the pennant.

My Take on it – This is a film that I heard about years ago and only knew that it was a musical featuring baseball.

They do a great job keeping this film fun throughout especially for fans of the sport of baseball like me.

There is so much that they get right with this story as things move along at a great pace while still remaining interesting throughout.

The songs are quite catchy and although not spectacular help get us into the mood of the story.

The cats is superb which helps keep things nice and enjoyable throughout.

Gwen Verdon does a wonderful job in the role of another “prisoner” of the Devil who uses her powers of seduction to help keep everyone in line.

She really stands out in this role and steals every scene she’s in.

Tab Hunter is also great in the lead and makes us understand the predicament that his character has gotten himself into.

Ray Walston is perfectly cast as the role of the Devil and it’s quite easy to believe him in this kind of role.

They also do a wonderful job here touching upon some very powerful and impactful issues that help make this story even more poignant the entire time especially when the characters begin to see what is truly important in life.

Bottom Line – Very enjoyable film especially for a fan of baseball like me. They get a lot of things right which helps keep things interesting. The songs are catchy and the great cast helps keep things interesting.  Verdon definitely stands out in her role trying to make sure Hunter keeps his end of the bargain at all costs. Walston is perfectly cast as the Devil and it’s quite easy to believe him in that kind of role.  The story itself touches upon some great issues that make things even more impactful and poignant. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Because so many of the artists associated with the original stage show were recruited for the film version, Damn Yankees (1958) emerged as one of the most faithful movie adaptations of a Broadway musical. With original star Gwen Verdon and choreographer Bob Fosse on hand, the film captures every move of Verdon’s legendary Tony Award-winning performance, particularly her signature hip isolations, on spectacular display in her showstopping musical numbers. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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