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The Game
Perfect game.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by William Dear
Produced by David Salzberg
Mark W Koch
Christian Tureaud
Jason French
Written by W. William Winokur
Starring Clifton Collins Jr.
Cheech Marin
Moises Arias
Jake T. Austin
Ryan Ochoa
Carlos Padilla
Jansen Panettiere
Carlos Gómez
Emilie de Ravin
Music by Bill Conti
Cinematography Bryan F. Greenberg
Editing by Chris Conlee
Studio IndustryWorks Pictures
HighRoad Entertainment
Prelude Pictures
Lone Runner Entertainment
Independent Producers Alliance
Distributed by Image Entertainment
Release date(s) March 21, 2009 (2009-03-21) (Guadalajara)
April 16, 2010 (2010-04-16) (US)
Running time 118 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Money made $3,878,993

The Perfect Game is a 2009 American drama film directed by William Dear, based on the 2008 book of the same name written by W. William Winokur. The film is based on the events leading to the 1957 Little League World Series, which was won by the first team from outside the United States, the Industrial Little League of Monterrey, Mexico, who defeated the heavily favored U.S. team. Mexican pitcher Ángel Macías threw the first, and so far only, perfect game in championship game history.

Plot

César Faz (Clifton Collins Jr.), moves to Monterrey, Mexico, after he is let go by the St. Louis Cardinals from his job as a clubhouse attendant. There he meets local children being led by Padre Esteban (Cheech Marin), enjoying baseball; he takes pitcher Ángel Macías (Jake T. Austin), under his wing and brags about his own pitching skills and how he used to coach the Cardinals. Ángel convinces César to help recruit and coach Monterrey's first-ever Little League team. With César's skills and Padre Esteban's support, the boys hone themselves into a competitive team worthy of international competition. At the final game of the World Series of Little League, Monterrey defeated the team of West La Mesa, California, 4–0. Enrique Suárez (Jansen Panettiere), hit a grand slam home run, and Ángel Macías pitched a perfect game, a feat that has not since been repeated in Little League World Series history.

When the team arrives in the United States, they are met with racism, a language barrier, and visa troubles. Though the underdogs, the team scores a series of victories that endear them to the media, and new fans. They befriend a sports reporter, Frankie (Emilie de Ravin), and the groundskeeper, Cool Papa Bell (Louis Gossett Jr.), who then assist the boys in reaching the final game.

Cast

Jake T. Austin 2008
Actor Jake T. Austin in 2008
  • Ernie Lively as Coach Sam Hicks
  • Clifton Collins Jr. as César Faz
  • Cheech Marin as Padre Esteban
  • Moisés Arias as Mario Ontiveros
  • Jake T. Austin as Ángel Macías
  • Ryan Ochoa as Norberto Villarreal
  • Carlos Padilla as Baltazar Charles
  • Gabriel Morales as Ricardo Treviño
  • Jansen Panettiere as Enrique Suárez
  • Carlos Gómez as Umberto Macías
  • Alfredo Rodríguez as José Pepe Maiz
  • Emilie de Ravin as Frankie
  • Samantha Boscarino as Gloria
  • Patricia Manterola as María
  • Louis Gossett Jr. as Cool Papa Bell
  • William May as Juan
  • Bruce McGill as Tanner
  • David Koechner as Charlie
  • Frances Fisher as Betty
  • Wyatt Smith as Jarrett
  • Marc Musso as Tommy
  • Tracey Walter as Police Officer
  • Riley Wells as a spectator at the Little League World Series

Background

The film is based on a true story about a group of boys from Monterrey, Mexico, who became the first non-U.S. team to win the Little League World Series in 1957. Their team was Industriales de Monterrey, nicknamed "Los pequeños gigantes" (The little giants). Before traveling to the United States, the Little League team of the Industriales de Monterrey Baseball Club, played two seasons on the local 4 team Little League circuit before qualifying, as the second Little League team coming from outside of the United States and Canada; they participated in the southern area regional tournaments, which qualified them for the Little League World Series, held every August in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

The Industriales won all qualifying tournaments, to many rather unexpectedly, and advanced to the Little League World Series as the first Mexican team. There, they made it to the finals and defeated the highly favored team from La Mesa, California by a score of 4–0. The pitcher from Monterrey, Angel Macías, threw the first and only perfect game in championship history. The Industriales de Monterrey little league team was so dominant that year, that they were able to repeat their success in the following year in the 1958 Little League World Series.

The film scenes in Monterrey, which is the leading industrial center, one of the largest Mexican cities for over 100 years and a major center for science and research in Mexico, depicted the city as a two-burro village where the children played ball in the dirt choked streets with pigs and chickens serving as bases. The border between Mexico and Texas was portrayed as an out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere border crossing along a dirt road, instead of a bridge border-crossing over the Rio Grande. The digital work to recreate the separate looks for the United States and Monterrey in 1957 was done by Post Logic Studios.

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