Top positive review
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A modern classic
on 5 August 2002
If Frank Capra had been making movies in the late 1980s, he probably would have made Field of Dreams. Many of the best loved movies deal with the hopes and dreams of ordinary folk. More recently, this has been repeated by 'The Shawshank Redemption'and back in Capra's era it was 'It's a Wonderful Life'. Two very different movies dealing with the subject of faith in our own dreams, both of which are universally loved by audiences.
Field of Dreams centres around Ray Kinsella, his wife Annie and their daughter who live on a farm in Iowa. Ray is a self confessed novice farmer whos efforts to keep the business financially viable are becomming pressured.
One day, whilst in his cornfield Ray hears 'the voice' and is told "If you build it he will come". Ray takes this as a sign that he is to build a Baseball field on his farm and that Shoeless Joe Jackson (his deceased sporting hero) will come and play, allowing his hero some redemption for his shame and exile from baseball following illegal 'throwing of games'in his heyday.
Unsurprisingly, Annie thinks Ray is losing grip on reality but gradually warms to Rays idea, sensing that it is something much more than the misguided project of a slightly lost farmer.
The film develops as Ray builds his field and mysterious and magical things begin to happen to those around him.
Along the way he meets many beatifully crafted and played characters. James Earl Jones as a burnt out 60's novelist and Burt Lancaster as a failed Baseball player turned doctor.
Ray is selfless in his persuit of helping those around him achieve their goals and only towards the end of the film does he ask "whats in it for me?".
We all find out whats in it for Ray at the end in a closing scene that will melt even the hardest heart. Ray fulfills his real dream without even really consiously knowing what it was.
Some of the pro-critics have accused the movie of being overly sentimental but the film is a charming and magical jouney through the lives of ordinary folk. Most of us are Ray Kinsellas, with dreams we may never be brave enough to try to fulfill.
If only Hollywood made more films of this class rather than the endless stream of mindless action movies maybe that seem to bombard us from every angle.
Dont be put off by the baseball theme, just sir back enjoy the story, the beautiful Iowa cornfields, the acting, the superb musical score and you too will believe that dreams can come true.