Playing for Keeps

Playing for Keeps

Director: Gabriele Muccino

Cast: Gabriele Muccino, Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Noah Lomax

     
 

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A burnt-out soccer star tries to win back his family but gets distracted by his wandering eye in this romantic comedy starring Gerard Butler. His bank account drained and his libido fatigued, professional soccer player George (Butler) hangs up his cleats and heads back to Virginia. Determined to do right in the eyes of his ex-wife (JessicaSee more details below

Overview

A burnt-out soccer star tries to win back his family but gets distracted by his wandering eye in this romantic comedy starring Gerard Butler. His bank account drained and his libido fatigued, professional soccer player George (Butler) hangs up his cleats and heads back to Virginia. Determined to do right in the eyes of his ex-wife (Jessica Biel) and their lonely son (Noah Lomax), George takes a job coaching a local soccer team and begins working to form the young players into true athletes. But with every cougar in town eyeing him from the sidelines, George finds that staying focused on the job and keeping his prurient impulses in check are easier said than done.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jason Buchanan
Gerard Butler nobly fends off the advances of throngs of beautiful women in Playing for Keeps, which isn't a documentary but instead an innocuous, predictable romantic comedy about a womanizing former soccer star determined to win back his ex-wife and be a real father to their smart and sensitive son. Playful and sweet yet instantly forgettable, it's the kind of film that has a bit more honesty and heart than many would like to admit, but it still fails to blossom into anything more than the standard romance despite an unexpectedly nuanced screenplay by Robbie Fox (penning his first solo script since 1993's So I Married an Axe Murderer) and competent direction by Gabriele Muccino (Seven Pounds, The Pursuit of Happyness). His bank account drained and his libido fatigued, professional soccer player George (Butler) hangs up his cleats and heads back to Virginia. Determined to do right in the eyes of his ex-wife Stacie (Jessica Biel) and their lonely son Lewis (Noah Lomax), he takes a job coaching Lewis' youth soccer team and begins shaping the players into true athletes. But with every cougar in town eyeing him from the sidelines, George finds that staying focused on the job and keeping his prurient impulses in check are easier said than done. Meanwhile, as Stacie's wedding date with new fiancé Matt (James Tupper) draws near, George's efforts to become a sportscaster finally pay off when he's offered a job at ESPN. Unfortunately, the position would mean moving to Connecticut just as he seems to be making a breakthrough with Lewis. Now the former sports star who still hungers for the spotlight faces a difficult decision: Does he stay in Virginia and devote his life to the only family he's got, or leave them behind to become a broadcaster at the biggest sports network in the country? On the surface, Playing for Keeps is a film that virtually invites critics to feast like hyenas: Fox's screenplay makes few attempts to stray from convention, there's precious little wit woven into the dialogue, and as George fights to free himself from the Venus flytrap thighs of every lonely soccer mom in town it's difficult for the character to earn our sympathies. As the story progresses and the plot becomes clear, however, something unusual begins to happen. Characters who initially appeared one-dimensional show hints of complexity not usually found in such lightweight fare, the father/son relationship at the heart of the film casts an unexpected air of tenderness over the entire affair, and bit players such as Uma Thurman (playing drunk to perfection in a crucial party scene) and Dennis Quaid add some much welcomed color to the background. None of this exactly elevates Playing for Keeps above the standard rom com, though it does help to distinguish it from the glut of contemporary movies that seem content to simply go through the motions. It might not be enough to make a dent at the box office or create any romantic-comedy converts, but for those who buy a ticket with their expectations in check (and others who are reluctantly dragged to the theater along with them), it could be just the kind of pleasant surprise that leaves your inner cynic at a momentary loss for words...at least until you stumble out into the lobby with the horrible realization that you've just been emotionally sucker punched by a Gerard Butler movie.

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Product Details

Release Date:
03/05/2013
UPC:
0043396414440
Original Release:
2012
Rating:
PG13
Source:
Sony Pictures
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
1:45:00
Sales rank:
32,996

Special Features

Deleted scenes; The playbook: making Playing for Keeps; Creating an all-star tema: the cast of Playing for Keeps

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Gerard Butler George
Jessica Biel Stacie
Noah Lomax Lewis
Dennis Quaid Carl
Uma Thurman Patti
Catherine Zeta-Jones Denise
James Tupper Matt
Judy Greer Barb
Abella Wyss Ally
Grant S. Goodman Billy
Grant Collins Griffin
Aidan Potter Hunter
Marlena Rayne Lerner Samantha
Igbal Theba Param
Sean O'Bryan Assistant Coach Jacob
Mike Martindale Coach Len
Jason Winston George Chip Johnston
Emily Somers Dawn
Gerry May Sports Anchor
Katia Gomez Lupe
Gisella Marengo Mom #1
Cindy Creekmore Mom #2
Nicki Buggs Mom #3
Ritchie Montgomery The Owner
Jon Mack Connie
Jesse De Luna Desk Sergeant
Soumia Aakaboune Aracelli
Parker Eppes Joel
Joe Chrest Referee
Shanna Forrestall Clerk
Aisha Kabia ESPN Woman Executive
Jody Lambert ESPN Male Executive
Adam Kulbersh ESPN Studio Technician
Kimberly Hawthorne ESPN Receptionist

Technical Credits
Gabriele Muccino Director
Steve Aaron Sound Mixer
Selena Arizanovic Musical Direction/Supervision
Andy Berman Associate Producer
Gerard Butler Producer
Ed Cathell Executive Producer
Denise Chamian Casting
Boaz Davidson Executive Producer
Danny Dimbort Executive Producer
Daniel Dorrance Production Designer
Robbie Fox Screenwriter
Richard L. Fox Asst. Director
Andrea Guerra Score Composer
Andrea Leone Co-producer
Raffaella Leone Co-producer
Avi Lerner Executive Producer
Heidi Jo Markel Producer
Padraic McKinley Editor
Peter Menzies Cinematographer
Kevin Misher Producer
Jonathan Mostow Producer
Danielle Robinson Associate Producer
Angelica Russo Costumes/Costume Designer
Peter Schlessel Executive Producer
Trevor Short Executive Producer
Alan Siegel Producer
John Thompson Producer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Playing for Keeps
1. Scene 1 [5:20]
2. Scene 2 [7:26]
3. Scene 3 [5:01]
4. Scene 4 [8:10]
5. Scene 5 [3:57]
6. Scene 6 [7:15]
7. Scene 7 [4:15]
8. Scene 8 [7:30]
9. Scene 9 [8:38]
10. Scene 10 [3:55]
11. Scene 11 [6:19]
12. Scene 12 [5:52]
13. Scene 13 [5:31]
14. Scene 14 [5:00]
15. Scene 15 [5:40]
16. Scene 16 [15:34]

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