Tanner Reviews Fever Pitch (2005)


Fever_Pitch_USOh my… This was absolutely terrible. Why didn’t I watch this movie for Cheesy Romance Month? It takes me great pains to say this… But I have actually found a movie that makes me want to watch Just Go With It again. Damn! I feel dirty saying that! This movie makes me WANT to sit through an Adam Sandler movie! That is how bad it is! At least with that movie I knew what I was about to watch was going to be terrible and at least the humor did not offend me at every turn with highly questionable morals, terrible stereotypes, and is a bastardized American version of what was originally a Football (Soccer if you must) story!

Fever Pitch is the story of Ben Wrightman (Jimmy Fallon) and Lindsey Meeks (Drew Barrymore). Ben is a 30-year-old man-child who has an obsession with the Boston Red Sox. He owns season tickets to the Sox and has been going since he was a 7-year-old boy. He meets Lindsey, a workaholic who is obsessed with her job. The two begin to date. Throughout their courtship, Lindsey and Ben’s relationship blossoms and is later put on strain by Ben’s obsession with the Boston Red Sox as it consumes every part of his life. I wish I could explain more of this movie, but in all seriousness that is about it. It is an extraordinarily padded film based around a very simple concept, two people fall in love, the Boston Red Sox are involved, it strains their relationship. That is about it.

Pros

It Can Be Relatable

I will hand the movie this, coming from a family that is huge into sports… I can see the appeal. My father is a huge West Virginia University fan and him and my mom go to WVU games on a regular basis. Most of their dates consisted of going to WVU games before I was born. So I can understand the bonding over sports and I’m sure others can relate to this as well… Too bad this is the only thing I can find as a positive to this movie.

Cons

The Ben Character Has a Serious Problem and Should be Fired!download

This is played up in the movie, in the way that Ben’s character has a serious addiction to the Red Sox that ties back to him being happy while he was watching them play as a boy. But this goes beyond the point of obsession and goes into the territory of a man who needs psychological help. He has a man-child like quality to him that is seen in his work as a high school teacher. It is okay to play around and be a relatable teacher to the kids, but when you are throwing footballs in the hallway, hitting a teacher, blaming a student, witnessing a student smoking, do nothing but chastise him and send him back to class, and let your students do what they want in class… You have gone from being Mr. Cool Teacher to someone who should be fired!

Horrible Clichéd Writing

There are so many lines in this movie that will just make you groan as they flop their way out of the actors and actresses mouths. I’m not blaming Barrymore or Fallon. They did the best they could with the line delivery, though I’m not a fan of Fallon’s awkward style of humor. But when the Lindsey character starts talking about Ben’s ‘romantic heart’ after he talks about the Red Sox churns up vomit inducing memories of middle school love letters. There are terrible jokes at the expense of the ‘bald anesthesiologist’. I am not sure why it is a joke or why it is even funny… But apparently they love to play it up like it is a joke. Most of Ben’s lines of attempting to be romantic comes across more as an awkward child trying to pretend to flirt than any real sort of connection. Once again, no fault of Fallon who does the best he can with what is given… But anytime the Ben character opens his mouth makes you want to slap your head in disgust.

Horrendous Examples of Relationships

This is by far the thing that pissed me off the most when I was watching this movie. It can be tied into the aforementioned clichéd writing part of my review, but it deserves its own category! Judging from the way this movie is written, it has some very ignorant views on the way that relationships work and how people function in general. I would understand if they presented some of these views in a more respectful way, then I would not have gotten offended at every single turn!

download (1)Let’s start with something relatively small in the grand scheme of the movie, in this scene Lindsey begins to go through Ben’s closet and comments that his closet is not a ‘man’s closet’. This was stated after it is well established that Ben is a very big Red Sox fan. She then goes on to comment that he does not have a single suit and that it is a ‘child’s closet’ because he has a handful of Red Sox memorabilia and no suits. So do you understand that men of the world?! Apparently if you do not own a suit then something is clearly wrong with you! It isn’t like people do different jobs that may not require them to own a suit or need MULTIPLE suits. You clearly see Ben at work wearing appropriate clothing for a grade school teacher, so it isn’t like he does not own nice clothes. But after Lindsey makes the crude comment that his closet is not FILLED with suits, it almost turns into a fight! So owning nice clothes is not enough, owning one suit is not enough, men if you do not own at least a CLOSET full of suits then you are obviously a failure of life. Just call it a day right now. No woman will every want to go near you again.

Second, apparently if you are not married by a certain age then there is clearly something wrong with you. This lovely little line of dialogue comes when Lindsey introduces Ben to her friends. Later the women split apart for a little ‘girl talk’ which we will get to in a moment. But while there, the women start saying that there is clearly a problem with Ben because he is past 30 and not married or in a serious relationship. So does everyone understand that? If you are not married or at least on your way by 30 then there is clearly something wrong with you. You are a weirdo or a creep or some strange creature that nobody wants to be with and you should just settle for anyone who is willing to put up with your deep seeded neurosis and eek out what’s left of your miserable existence!

Finally, apparently from what this movie tells me, the ONLY thing men talk about is sports and the ONLY thing that women talk about is men. The entire movie, unless you see the Ben and Lindsey together working out their relationship, is spent with a group of men or a group of women. If it is Lindsey with her friends, the ONLY thing they talk about is men and relationships. If they talk about their careers, it has to be tied back in to men, if they talk about their activities, it has to involve talking about men! Apparently that is all women are capable of talking about! This is not helped by the fact that a major part of Lindsey’s character is her career and advancing her career. Apparently that is completely irrelevant to her and her friends when a MAN is involved in her life. Then, on the opposite end of that spectrum any time Ben is not with Lindsey and with his male friends or even the husbands of Lindsey’s friends the ONLY THING they ever talk about is sports. Who’s winning, who has tickets, who is going to win? They will not shut up about fucking sports! I understand! It is a sports movie, I get it! But believe it or not, MEN AND WOMEN CAN TALK ABOUT OTHER THINGS! I will take anything, even something about the damn weather, just show me that men and women can actually communicate about more than just two damn topics!

Conclusion

This movie is horrendous! It is terribly written, it has been Americanized because God forbid nobody will want to see a movie about ‘soccer’, and it sets a horrible message about how relationships should work. I have seen my fair share of bad romantic comedies, but very few have left me offended on just about every level imaginable. I loved the story of the Boston Red Sox and winning the World Series. But this is NOT the way to commemorate that.

Final Score 0.5/5

Thank you for reading! If you enjoyed this review, then please like and subscribe for more. Keep in mind, this weekend is the Youngstown State HvZ Invitational! If you are able to, you should attend. It is going to be a great time.

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