Bang The Drum Slowly
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A guaranteed tear-jerker, Bang the Drum Slowly centers on professional baseball player Bruce Pearson (Robert DeNiro) and his team mate Henry Wiggen (Michael Moriarty), who supported Bruce to the bitter end after learning that the young catcher was diagnosed with Hodgkin's disease and would soon die. When hayseed Pearson first joined the team, he and Wiggen, the team's red-hot pitcher were oil and water. The other team members were none to thrilled to have Pearson on their team. Wiggen changes his attitude when he learns of Pearson's illness, and when the other team members find… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The material is trite, but Hancock's slow-motion treatment of the experience of athletic performance is adroit and graceful."
‑ Don Druker, Chicago Reader
"It is one of those rare instances in which close adaptation of a good book has resulted in possibly an even better movie."
‑ Roger Greenspun, New York Times
"Talky, leisurely, and poetic baseball drama."
‑ Charles Cassady, Common Sense Media
"A well-done if depressing film."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"Low key character study of baseball player dying; De Niro, Moriarty are fine."
‑ Steve Crum,
"A funny, gentle and honestly sentimental movie that is easily one of the best of the year in any category, and very possibly the best movie about sport ever made in this country."
‑ Richard Schickel, TIME Magazine
"Until Field of Dreams came along, director John Hancock's moving buddy drama held the title of the best baseball movie ever made."
‑ Alan Jones, Radio Times
"It was first filmed for television, where it seems best suited as a 'disease of the week' movie."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"It's a good film, avoiding all the obvious goop and the 'big game' cliché at the climax."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
"Finally, a baseball melodrama with a full count of emotional impact. Hancock's narrative delivers the right pitch of intensity"
‑ Frank Ochieng,
"Never before has a movie considered the game from the inside out."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"This sports melodrama about a dying athlete is sentimental and predictable, but it's also very well acted by the young De Niro, Vincente Gardenia and Michael Moriarty."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"Mention this flick to any guy over 40 and watch him get all weepy."
‑ Scott Weinberg,
"Unfortunately, no real relationships are ever developed in this film, so, even with Robert DeNiro playing the lead, something always seems to be lacking."
‑ Mike Barkacs,
"A great baseball movie and a touching buddy film with De Niro showing the talent that has made him one of our best actors. Moriarity gives a fine performance as his star-pitcher friend."
‑ Bob Bloom, Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
More reviews for Bang The Drum Slowly on Rotten Tomatoes