Jackie Robinson finally gets his turn at bat in a new trailer for the upcoming film “42,” about how he broke the color barrier in Major League Baseball in the 1940s. The trailer is set against a Jay-Z rap “Brooklyn Go Hard,” which does the film no favors.
Robinson, played by Chadwick Boseman, endured unbelievable abuse and humiliation as a player for the Brooklyn Dodgers, but his demeanor on and off the field, not to mention his stellar play, helped turn the tide against segregation.
Hard to say whether Robinson would be a fan of hip hop, but Jay-Z’s over-the-top braggadocio hardly represents the spirit of Robinson’s character, or the era in which he played. The lyrics glorify thug life. In fact, the song lampoons Robinson’s good-guy image.
“I father, I Brooklyn Dodger them
I Jack, I Rob, I sin
Awww man, I’m Jackie Robinson
Except when I run base, I dodge the pen
Lucky me, lucky we, they didn’t get me”
Robinson was born in rural Georgia, and never hustled on the streets of Brooklyn. While he grew up poor, raised by a single mother, in California, he left UCLA just shy of graduation.
His major league career is a momentous achievement in American history and the Civil Rights Movement, and the newly released clip focuses on the impact breaking baseball’s color barrier would have on the nation and the difficulties Jackson would face.
While playing the scene out against a hip-hop track gives the film a contemporary feel, Jackie Robinson’s life was no pimp roll. It was exactly the opposite.
“42” hits theaters in April 2013, which coincides with the start of baseball season. Check out the clip below and click here to follow TheImproper on Twitter for more movie updates.