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Mixed or average reviews - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 74 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: "If you build it, he will come." With thes words, Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella (Costner) is inspired by a voice he can't ignore to pursue a dream he can hardly believe. Supported by his wife Annie (Madigan), Ray begins the quest by turning his ordinary cornfield into a place where dreams can"If you build it, he will come." With thes words, Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella (Costner) is inspired by a voice he can't ignore to pursue a dream he can hardly believe. Supported by his wife Annie (Madigan), Ray begins the quest by turning his ordinary cornfield into a place where dreams can come true. Along the way he meets reclusive activist Terence Mann (Jones), the mysterious "Doc" Graham (Lancaster), and even the legendary "Shoeless Joe" Jackson (Liotta). (Universal) Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 17
  2. Negative: 2 out of 17
  1. 100
    This is the kind of movie Frank Capra might have directed, and James Stewart might have starred in - a movie about dreams.
  2. Reviewed by: Caryn James
    90
    A work so smartly written, so beautifully filmed, so perfectly acted, that it does the almost impossible trick of turning sentimentality into true emotion.
  3. 75
    As shrewd and accomplished as the movie is, there's still something uncomfortably manipulative about it... It doesn't explore its primal theme as much as it exploits it, tapping into the automatic, nearly universal power of guilt and regret. [21 Apr 1989, Friday, p.A]
  4. Reviewed by: Staff (Non Credited)
    60
    Ultimately, the film relies too heavily on consensual acceptance of baseball iconography as some kind of symbolic shorthand for all kinds of American values. These days, most of us prefer the NBA.
  5. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    50
    In spite of a script hobbled with cloying aphorisms and shameless sentimentality, Field of Dreams sustains a dreamy mood in which the idea of baseball is distilled to its purest essence.
  6. The movie may steal a base here and there, but there are no homers.
  7. 12
    To be honest, I started hearing things, too. Just when Jones was delivering an inexcusably sappy speech about baseball being "a symbol of all that was once good in America," I heard the words "If he keeps talking, I'm walking."

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 17
  2. Negative: 1 out of 17
  1. ReidF.
    Feb 2, 2007
    10
    One of the most beautiful films ever made, I find this movie to be a litmus test. Those who don't like it (and there are many) are One of the most beautiful films ever made, I find this movie to be a litmus test. Those who don't like it (and there are many) are generally people with little or no imagination. Overall, there are so many touching and superb aspects and scenes in this movie that it requires multiple viewings. It is a great film about the fragile relationship between father and son. Expand
  2. WesW.
    Dec 28, 2006
    10
    Great movie about the relationship, or lack of same, between a son & a father. I won't spoil the ending. A movie for all ages.
  3. AstridF.
    Jun 9, 2007
    10
    Love it, love it, love it!! It is so moving, and so clever, I must have seen it 100 times. I know, it sounds a little weird, but it really is Love it, love it, love it!! It is so moving, and so clever, I must have seen it 100 times. I know, it sounds a little weird, but it really is that good. Expand
  4. Nov 28, 2012
    9
    With "Field of Dreams", Phil Alden Robinson creates one of the most heartwarming sports movies I've ever seen. Though it isn't really a sportsWith "Field of Dreams", Phil Alden Robinson creates one of the most heartwarming sports movies I've ever seen. Though it isn't really a sports movie at heart, in my opinion. This movie is mostly about getting an oppurtunity to fulfill one's deepest wishes. Throw in some really heartfelt messages on father/son relationships and you have me sold. Kevin Costner, Amy Madigan, and Ray Liotta are all incredible in their respective roles, but James Earl Jones steals almost every scene he's in in this movie. The guy gives a fantastic speech towards the end of this movie that made me smile ear to ear. In the end, "Field of Dreams" is a really and truly powerful sports drama. It features a wealth of well developed and executed themes and a heap of great performances. Awesome movie. Expand
  5. May 16, 2015
    9
    This past father’s day, I decided to look back at one certain film that reminded me it was a true gift to have a father; a film that remindedThis past father’s day, I decided to look back at one certain film that reminded me it was a true gift to have a father; a film that reminded me why a family is the best thing you could have in your life. This is Phil Alden Robinson’s 'Field of Dreams', possibly one of the most poignant films ever made. It is a baseball film that instead of focusing on winning a game or championship, it is, at it’s core, a father and son story.

    The beginning of the film is told through the perspective of Ray Kinsella (Kevin Costner), where he gives a backstory of his past, telling how he grew up without a mother and how he lost his father at age 17. In the present day, because his father was a professional baseball player, he decides to make his cornfield into a real baseball diamond after hearing a voice whisper to him “If you build it, he will come”. When he completes the field, the 1919 Chicago Black Sox baseball team begin to play baseball on the diamond in ghost form as it was the team Ray’s father was a part of. The movie aims at telling a story that the audience can relate with by adding drama and emotion to challenge the characters and have them develop.

    The characters of the film are all believable and relatable. The main protagonist, Ray Kinsella, is a farmer who constantly has bad memories of his past, and when he builds the baseball field, he begins to forget the past and move on. He can connect with the viewers because of his deep connection with his father. For the supporting characters, there’s Ray’s Wife, Annie Kinsella (Amy Madigan), who is always there to support Ray by encouraging him to keep the field. She also helps him find out why the voice was telling him to build the baseball field. Shoeless Joe Jackson (Ray Liotta) is the first of the deceased Black Sox players to meet Ray in the baseball field, and he talks with Ray that he is more than happy to be able to play baseball again after the field was built. Mark (Timothy Busfield), Ray’s brother-in-law, wants Ray to sell the field due to financial issues that occur later in the film, but he later has a change of heart when he experiences that there really are baseball players coming to Ray’s yard to relive their golden age. But possibly the most affective character in the film, Terence Mann (James Earl Jones), a radical author who stopped writing books after his books were banned from schools. Because of this, he begins to form a connection with Ray, as they both experienced a painful past, which adds to the complexity of the two characters. All of these are part of what makes the movie work so well because none of them are just useless filler and help keep the audience’s attention by constantly moving the story forward.

    The strongest element of this film is the atmospheric score by James Horner. Usually in films like this, you would only hear small nitpicks of music just to fill in the quiet moments of the film, resulting in a mediocre soundtrack. For this film, however, rather than just having random music for filler, Composer Horner chose to have the music emphasize the tone of the film by giving it a “ghostly and quiet” feel to enhance the feel of the film and evoke the emotions of the characters. The ghostly and quiet tones are used when Ray completes the baseball field and waits for the results, and there is one scene in particular where we are introduced to the deceased Shoeless Joe Jackson. The score then uses a percussion drum and synthesizer with a sort of whimsical mood that really grabs the viewers attention because we are actually seeing a deceased figure in Ray’s newly made baseball field, and it emphasizes that Ray had “achieved the impossible”.

    It’s extremely rare that we have sports movies that have a story that doesn’t use the usual “struggling team must win big game” plot and instead adds complexity to the characters and having the audience connect with the nature and overall tone of the film. I consider 'Field of Dreams' to be one of the most inspirational films of all time, and it is a must watch for all baseball fans and moviegoers everywhere, with a story that is very inspirational, relatable characters, and an atmospheric score that tugs at your heartstrings. Perhaps what this film taught us most of all is that when we build our dreams, they will come.
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  6. Jul 24, 2011
    8
    I thought it was a spectacular movie. It was really great and it really taught you the lesson of bringing back the past every once in awhile.I thought it was a spectacular movie. It was really great and it really taught you the lesson of bringing back the past every once in awhile. It was a cool mixture of drama, mystery, and comedy. It's a classic Kevin Costner movie and will be in my favorites for a long time. Expand
  7. Jan 17, 2012
    1
    This movie horrified me. Managing to be bathetic and trite while simultaneously being outlandish and grandiose, the movie fell from whateverThis movie horrified me. Managing to be bathetic and trite while simultaneously being outlandish and grandiose, the movie fell from whatever place it had occupied on the shelf, to a despairing Gehenna at my deepest loathing. The acting was full of overextended, sloppy gesticulations and Wagnerian squawking, ineffectual delivery and spastic presence. The writing was sufferable at best. Truly a disappointment. Collapse

See all 17 User Reviews

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