Gary Cooper is ‘The Pride of the Yankees’ on Amazon Prime and Criterion Channel

Gary Cooper, that great Oak of an American actor, progresses from the awkward and naively shy rookie to the seasoned “Iron Man” first baseman of the New York Yankees without losing his idealism or modesty in The Pride of the Yankees (1942).

Nominated for 11 Academy awards (winning one for film editing), this handsome biographical drama of baseball legend Lou Gehrig is one of the most finely crafted films to emerge from Hollywood.

Teresa Wright captures the same slice of Americana with her mixture of girl next door sweetness and urban sophistication as his supportive wife Eleanor. After he’s diagnosed with a degenerative neurological disease (known today simply as Lou Gehrig’s disease), Cooper delivers Gehrig’s famous retirement speech from the mound of Yankee stadium with the courage and spirit of a winner: “I consider myself to be the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”

One of the most beloved sports films ever made, Pride is about more than simply baseball: Gehrig, the hard working, uncommonly talented son of immigrant parents, is the living embodiment of the American Dream. Walter Brennan and Dan Duryea costar as a Greek chorus of sportswriters and real life Yankees Bill Dickey, Mark Koenig, Bob Meusel, and Babe Ruth appear as themselves.

In black and white.

Add to Amazon Prime Watchlist or to My List on Criterion Channel

Also on DVD and on SVOD through Amazon Video, iTunes, GooglePlay, Fandango, Vudu and/or other services. Availability may vary by service.
The Pride of the Yankees [DVD]

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Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. He writes the weekly newspaper column Stream On Demand and the companion website, and his work appears at RogerEbert.com, Turner Classic Movies online, The Film Noir Foundation, and Parallax View.

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