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Discussion Guide: Moneyball


Movie Synopsis

Oakland A's general manager Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) challenges the system and defies conventional wisdom when his is forced to rebuild his small-market team on a limited budget. Despite opposition from the old guard, the media, fans and their own field manager (Philip Seymour Hoffman), Beane - with the help of a young, number-crunching, Yale-educated economist (Jonah Hill) - develops a roster of misfits and, along the way, forever changes the way the game is played.


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Discussion Questions

  1. How do you define teamwork? After watching Moneyball do you find your definition similar to or different from Billy Beane’s?
  2. Why do you think Billy Beane goes against traditional and conventional norms in order to recruit the best players?
  3. There is a scene between Billy and his associate Peter Brand in which Peter is professing how great it is that the A’s have just won 20 games, to which Billy replies that none of that matters because what he’s more interested in is changing the game and wanting it to mean something. What do you think he means by having it "mean something?"
  4. How does Billy Beane handle selfish players that don't respect the whole team? What message does his response to this type of behavior send to the rest of the team?
  5. Is Billy Beane a win-at-all-costs manager? Why or why not?

What Parents Need To Know

Parents need to know that this inspiring, intelligent film based on Michael Lewis' bestselling non-fiction book stars Brad Pitt as a professional baseball manager who tries to reinvent the art of recruiting players. It's an incisive look at the classic game that -- thanks to pretty tame content aside from some swearing (including "f--k" and "s--t"), social drinking, and references to Las Vegas -- is age-appropriate for older tween sports movie fans and up. Plus, it has a strongly positive message about committing to a course of action and seeing it through no matter what.

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Our partner, Positive Coaching Alliance, provides a collection of movie discussion guides, which aim to help you make the most out of movie viewing with your team or child. Movies provide many of "teachable moments" parents can share with their young athletes helping them be successful, contributing members of society.

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