I have finally gotten around to watching Fever Pitch, the 2005 flick starring Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore.
When the movie starts, seven-year-old Ben Wrightman is going to a Red Sox game with his Uncle Carl, and he quickly becomes a hardcore Red Sox fan. After Carl dies from cancer, Ben inherits his season tickets and for 23 years he remains a loyal, game-attending Sox fan.
When thirty-year-old Ben starts dating Lindsay Meeks, things go very well at first. But, of course, it is the off season when they start dating, so Lindsay doesn’t have a full perspective on how deep Ben’s baseball obsession runs — she just knows that everything in his apartment has a Red Sox logo on it. Lindsay agrees to go to Opening Day with Ben, but as the season progresses, it becomes evident how little Lindsay knows about baseball or the Red Sox. Lindsay tries hard to understand and accept Ben’s passion, but her determination to earn a promotion in her job, which means working long hours, causes friction in the face of Ben’s determination to attend every game.
Things come to a head when Lindsay invites Ben to join her on a work-related trip to Paris, but Ben declines because the Sox are in the midst of a heated playoff race. The relationship ends up in serious trouble, though the resolution proves both amusing and touching — fitting for a romantic comedy.
This is the first time I’ve watched a Jimmy Fallon performance as an actor, and I have to admit that I was impressed. This movie is definitely more rom-com than baseball movie, but it does have enough baseball in it to keep a fan interested. It doesn’t make me want to become a Sox fan anytime soon, but it does make me wonder if I might be able to find some Minnesota Twins toilet paper.