The quest for enshrinement in Cooperstown New York has been a driven force of many great players in the history of Baseball. The Hall of Fame marks the pinnacle of a career as it establishes its members as the greatest to every play the game.
Admission to the hallowed halls has long been the subject of debate as members have to be voted on by members of the media and many fringe players have often called the admissions process nothing more than a popularity contest. One rule that has been fast and firm over the years has been that any player who accumulates 3000 hits in a career is granted membership into the Hall of Fame.
In the new Bernie Mac Comedy “Mr. 3000”, audiences are introduced to Stan Ross, a talented hitter with an acerbic manner who is loved by fans and fated by his teammates and media for his selfish attitude. Upon getting his 3000th hit, Stan retires in the midst of a pennant race leaving his team high and dry while he basks in his retirement and a slew of endorsements under the moniker of MR.3000.
A decade passes and Stan is still not in the Hall of Fame though he should have been a first ballot election 5 years after his retirement. Stan is convinced that it is only a matter of time until he is elected as he just missed the cut the previous year.
With preparations under way for the new inductees, a startling fact is uncovered that shakes Stan’s world to its very foundation. It seems that Stan was credited with 3 hits for the second half of a suspended game in addition to the first half leaving him with only 2997 official hits.
Undaunted, Stan returns to the Brewers who are anxious to have a fan-favorite back to pump up their last place team. Stan thinks that his return will be a snap but soon becomes the focus of a media storm, as at 47, he is not able to get around on pitches and spends more time on the bench after striking out.
Stan also has to contend with the one who got away when sexy reporter Mo (Angela Bassett), is assigned to cover his quest for ESPN and has the old flames rekindled.
What follows is a fairly paint by numbers romantic comedy where Stan discovers what is really important in life and sets out to make the record books. Mac is a natural fit in the role as he mixes comedy and swagger but is also capable of genuine empathy and emotion. It was nice to see him start to display a range beyond his usual over the top and gruff characters. Bassett is solid as she takes what could have been a throw away roles and adds an air of class and nobility, proving that she is one of the most underrated talents in film today. “Mr. 3000”, is not going to offer any real surprises and the characters are not well defined like much of the plots one-note premise. In spite of this, you may find yourself smiling, and routing for Stan and in this area, it’s a hit.
3.5 stars out of 5.