[It] may be the first baseball film to tap into the thrill of strategizing - of manipulated cause and effect - as entertainingly as you'd expect from a movie about chess or a casino heist.
It gives Mr. Pitt, who hurtles through the movie, a chance to scat like a juiced-up Ella Fitzgerald, working his phones and seemingly every other general manager in the country, as he transforms a new baseball philosophy into action.
Baseball fans know this story, but Miller puts it all in fascinating context. This is a thinking person's baseball movie, a more complex version of the inspirational sports story.
To say that "Moneyball" is "inside baseball" is to undersell the idea of that sentence. This extraordinary hybrid of a movie lives and breathes the game, yet its achievement is bigger than that.
A deeply American film about a uniquely American sport in which a principled guy takes on the moneyed titans because he can't stand the unfairness of what they're doing to the game he still loves.
Pitt, who has a producing credit, is not the sole reason this tremendous -- yet intimate -- sports tale soars over the fences. The bench is deep. And the script has a powerful but finessed swing.
Remember those old '30s musicals that generated sizzle out of backstage machinations, charismatic producers conning investors and starstruck unknowns hitting the big time? That's how Moneyball plays...