New on DVD: 'American Pastime'
A new movie tackles the roundup of Japanese-Americans during World War II.
American Pastime (Not rated)
FDR's internment of Japanese-Americans in 1942 has largely been ignored by filmmakers. (One notable exception: 1999's "Snow Falling On Cedars.") In "American Pastime," two Japanese brothers arrive at Utah's Topaz prison camp where guard Billy Burrell (Gary "TPS reports" Cole, of "Office Space" fame) dreams of a baseball career. When it turns out that the brothers are baseball fans, Burrell organizes a game between the (racist) town locals and the Japanese inmates. Baseball, often used as a hoary metaphor in movies, is meant to symbolize that these Japanese are Americans, too. For all its uplift, the film isn't any more profound than that. Grade: B–
– Stephen Humphries