The Sandlot – 25th Anniversary Blu-ray Review

The Sandlot - 25th Anniversary Blu-ray Cover

On the outset, people consider The Sandlot to be just a simple “children’s movie.” In some ways, they’re right. The film goes through weird pacing issues which are typically found in these films. Not to mention, the questionable acting of some of the child actors. But there’s a good reason why many put The Sandlot on their top 10 greatest baseball films of all-time list.

The story about childhood friends coming together to play baseball and go on adventures during summer is a very relatable subject. It’s such an iconic portrayal of living in America during the summer. It’s not just a children’s movie in that respect. Adults can enjoy the nostalgia of The Sandlot. But as a kid growing up in the 90s, The Sandlot was amazing to us. This was our Goonies, our Bad News Bears, and our Stand By Me. Also, a lot of kids’ love of baseball stemmed from The Sandlot.

The chemistry between the kids is what makes the film so great too. Their interactions with each other are very natural and it’s clear that there’s a strong bond between each of them. For this reason, they bring both heart and humor to the film. Thus, it makes it easy for us to attach ourselves to them. Every one of the kids has their time to shine in the film.

The adults have every chance to shine as well—especially James Earl Jones and Art LaFleur. In their limited roles, they leave a lasting impression. Art LaFleur’s monologue about heroes being remembered, but legends never die is one of many iconic lines from the film. Yet that one is tailor-made for motivational purposes. In addition, Karen Allen is so incredibly tender as Scotty’s mother. The underrated Denis Leary also progresses nicely as Scotty’s step-father. He goes from neglectful to a caring father like that.

Overall, The Sandlot is easily one of the best baseball films of all time. It’s not about winning or making it into the majors. Essentially it’s about friendship and the nostalgia. It’s not perfect, but there’s no denying the impact that The Sandlot had on people. After all, how many times have you heard someone say, “you’re killin’ me, Smalls!”

Movie Rating: 4/5 atoms

Video

The Sandlot #1

The Sandlot hits Blu-ray with a 1080P MPEG-4 AVC encoded video and a 2.39:1 aspect ratio. This release is basically the same release as the first Blu-ray release back in 2011. However, for a film from the early 90’s, the film still holds up very well. The film isn’t as sharp as films shot in the past two decades so there are a little softness, slight flickering, and grain in certain scenes.

Regardless, it still looks amazing. The contrast is spot on as the video lacks any flatness whatsoever in the transfer. The black levels are deep and the colors are reproduced well even though the film has a warm palette. Grain can be seen throughout the film that’s a byproduct of the cameras at the time. Overall, it’s a solid video presentation even though it’s the same exact release as before. But as the old saying goes: “If it’s ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Video Rating: 4/5 atoms

Audio

The Sandlot #2

The Sandlot hits Blu-ray with a DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio track. Similar to the video presentation, the audio is the same as the 2011 Blu-ray release. As you can imagine, the audio isn’t as dynamic as other action-oriented films. That is to say, don’t expect any dynamic panning. However, it does get the essentials right. The ambient sound effects are robust and are placed accurately on the soundstage. Not to mention, the music and score are booming and do fill up the soundstage. The dialogue is crisp and can clearly be heard on all channels. Overall, this is another case of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Audio Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

Special Features

The Sandlot #3

The Sandlot contains the following special features:

  • Featurette
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • TV Spots

As you can see, there aren’t any changes to the special features list. It’s essentially the same as the 2011 and 2013 20th anniversary edition of the film. Unfortunately, this means that it’s the same dated material from the 90’s too. The featurette is not only in a 4:3 ratio but it’s a rather stale behind-the-scenes featurette too. It’s not as refined as other behind-the-scenes featurettes. Sadly, there’s nothing else on there that’s worth watching unless you want to see old theatrical trailers and TV spots as well.

Special Features Rating: 1/5 atoms

Extras

The Sandlot #4

The Sandlot 25th Anniversary

The 25th anniversary Blu-ray of The Sandlot comes with some special goodies with the Blu-ray. So the release comes with Topps baseball cards of the gang, a mini poster, and a booklet.


Overall, The Sandlot is a fantastic film that still holds up after all these years. Even as an adult, the film still evokes a ton of nostalgia. Thus, both kids and adults can enjoy the film. The video looks dated but it still looks great. The audio presentation is great as well but it’s a shame that there weren’t any 25th-anniversary special features for this release.

Overall Rating: 3.5/5 atoms

This Blu-ray was reviewed using a retail/advance copy/unit provided by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

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Mark Pacis
Mark Pacis 1352 posts

Self-proclaimed "Human IMDb" and comic book geek. Biggest Iron Man fan you'll probably ever meet.