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Eddie's Million Dollar Cook-Off
IMDB Rating: 6.1/10 from N/A votes
Release: 18 Jul 2003 /

Eddie's Million Dollar Cook-Off

Genre: Comedy, Family, Sport
Director: Paul Hoen,
Stars: , , ,
Synopsis: Eddie loves baseball. His dad's the coach, his best friends are his teammates. But will he strike out with them all if he trades his glove for an oven mitt.

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Critic Reviews

Hank Ogden (Mark L. Taylor) is a coach for a junior-high level community baseball team, the Groundhogs. Unfortunately, the team is much closer to the Bad News Bears than the New York Yankees. Hank's son Eddie (Taylor Ball) is one of the few quality players, and Hank thinks he has a shot of making it to the major leagues. Although Eddie likes baseball, he discovers that his true passion is for cooking. Eddie's Million Dollar Cook-Off is the comic tale of conflicting desires and expectations between Eddie and his friends, family and teammates over his aspirations.

Although some viewers may have difficulty looking past the exaggerated social beliefs and interactions fueling a prominent "moral of the story", this is a great, funny film that succeeds because of the style, subtlety and comic sense of director Paul Hoen, aided by excellent performances. I don't think I've ever seen food fights filmed this artfully before. Yes, food fights are clichéd, and much of the script, on its own, would be somewhat clichéd and banal, but Hoen and the cast manage to make the film feel fresh and original. I almost felt as though I had never seen a film centered around food before--your eyes are opened to the many metaphorical ways that such a commonplace thing is woven through our lives.

Of course, this film isn't just about food, though. Eddie's Million Dollar Cook-Off is intended to help shatter gender stereotypes--especially the way we try to graft them on to our children. The message is to follow your dreams, and be what you want to be, whether it's what others have planned for you, or expect of you, or not. At the same time, there's a message about supporting others in following their dreams. These are valuable messages for people of any age, not just kids, and the exaggerated and old-fashioned-seeming pigeonholing shown by the characters in the film are only cartoonish to emphasize the point.

This might all sound dreadfully serious and preachy, but the film doesn't tend to play that way. It plays as lighthearted, humorous and heartwarming. Just be careful that your kids don't have easy access to blenders and ovens after they watch the film, or you'll have some serious cleaning to do.

A 9 out of 10 from me.

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