This story of a young and talented Dominican baseball pitcher is interesting, but directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck (Half Nelson) have chosen to make it so low key that it sometimes drags. It is very uneven – it is alternately good, slow and then unwatchable in parts.
Miguel Santos (Algenis Perez Soto – first film) is a talented pitcher who is fighting hard to make it to the big leagues in American baseball. His nickname is "Azucar" which is the Spanish word for 'sugar'. Miguel is 19-years-old and lives in a small but tight village in the Dominican Republic. He is offered the chance to play minor league baseball in the U.S., so he leaves the Dominican.
Finding himself sticking out like a sore thumb in a small town in Iowa, Miguel plays baseball, but has trouble with the differences in culture, language and is feeling the pressure of doing well so he can financially help his family back home.
The story of an underdog with talent leaving his home so he can hit the big time in order to rescue his poor family back home is a story that Hollywood loves. It is a shame that the two directors have trouble translating the potential of the story to the screen. The themes in the film should be universally appealing, but it aren't.
The acting in the film is good, so good that is manages to rescue the film. Especially lead Algenis Perez Soto and his ability to convey the confusion that his character is feeling. Sugar loves baseball. He is a young man who just wants to play baseball and make money for his family, but he runs into a whole bunch of other roadblocks.
-Making Sugar: Run the Bases!
-Play Beisbol! The Dominican Dream
-Casting Sugar: Interviews with Algenis Perez Soto
-Previews of Blu-ray Disc is High Definition!, It Might Get Loud, Soul Power, Whatever Works, Coco Before Chanel, Easy Virtue, The Class, When Did You Last See Your Father?, and The Final Season