Clint Eastwood strikes a home run for pensioner power with another of his twilight grouches, this time a baseball scout with failing eyesight and an uncertain future.
While the sport is now about number-crunching and computers (see Moneyball) Gus Lobel (Eastwood) relies on old-fashioned instinct, but will it help in the decision to sign up an arrogant hotshot from the North Carolina minor league?
Personal issues are also at stake with his daughter, a high-flying lawyer (Amy Adams) resentful of his neglect, and with his former protégé (Justin Timberlake) who's starting out in the scouting game.
The "curve" in question is the famously tricky curveball, and a long-standing metaphor for thoughtful complication – something this film notably lacks. Adams and Eastwood are much too good for the hokey material before them, and the righteous denouement is so absurd as to be vaguely insulting.
John Goodman weighs in with a nice cameo as Clint's old boss, but the rest is strictly relegation form.