Wednesday, March 08, 2006


The Adventures of Reb & Jere - Posing as Press

I was in NYC last Wednesday night, as indicated by photographic evidence, on a mission with Jere. This adventure was a wee bit less exciting than others we have been on. It does seem rather silly to take the train into the city just to watch a movie that I could've seen here a week later. Still, it was kinda thrilling just to see jere and talk baseball. It's appropriate that this should happen on the eve of our first spring training game; we last saw each other at WCSG's for the last game of last season. (our plan to meet up at the ALDS home game 2 was so rudely thwarted by those other sox.)

In my title I pretend we might be doing something borderline-bad again. I must admit, in all honesty, that our attendance was perfectly legitimate. Jere was invited to the preview as a member of the press - and yes, apparently these people had full knowledge that jere's mode of publication is a red sox blog. He had called ahead of time and obtained a "+1" for me, so they had no idea that I intended to write about it, and dude didn't even seem to want to give me the notes handout. But I got one, and it doesn't say much anyway.

I must say that as a red sox fan, I was not exactly excited to see this movie. I'm an empathetic person, and the concept of re-living the agony of the 1986 world series through the characters of a movie did not appeal to me. After all, I've gone through a great deal of trouble to compartmentalize and avoid my own memories of said series for many, many years. Of course I could NOT avoid the Bill Buckner play, since that clip seemed ever so popular for a long time, and it began to re-play in my head each time I thought about going to see this film.

Just as I suspected, there is a ton of misery to be experienced in this movie, from the very start. They pile on the pain so thickly that you almost forget there's a game coming up - but Nicky Rogan (Michael Keaton) never does. And he's convinced they're going to fuck it up it up somehow. Jere and John had a big problem with that, saying everyone they knew thought the sox were going to win at that point. I remember being pretty hopeful myself. Nicky was an empty-glass kind of guy, so I guess it went along with his character to expect the worst. I thought it was strange that he only cited one of the sox past disappointments as reason to expect catastrophe.

The end is oddly cathartic, as if the characters had our present peace of mind shipped back in time. Or maybe they decided that the shared emotion of being a fan was more important than winning itself. Either way, there were some aspects of the film that were a little hard to buy as a fan, but the acting was good enough to support it. The movie was also very well produced, with fascinating details throughout. If you are like I was, reluctant to see this movie because of the painful memories involved, I can assure you I left the theater a lot less depressed than I expected. In fact, I think this movie helped me come to terms with the game it was named for, and even helped me appreciate the accomplishments of the great 1986 Red Sox. And judging from posts I've seen, I'm not the only one.

Game 6 comes tomorrow to a theater near you, and reb gives it the thumbs-up.

You sound like you're feeling better today. I hope so. Take care.
Reb, I have updated the review; The '86 Mets are now "The Team Of The Medellin Cartel", as the kind of Coke they used, wasn't the kind that Millar mixed with his Jack Daniels.
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