Catching Hell

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"The true story of baseball's most famous scapegoat."
  • 2011
  • 1 hr 42 min
  • 7.9  (1,705)

Catching Hell is a documentary film directed by Alex Gibney, released in 2011. The movie explores the infamous foul ball incident that occurred during Game 6 of the 2003 National League Championship Series (NLCS) between the Chicago Cubs and the Florida Marlins. The movie examines the event from different angles and shows how it impacted the lives of those involved. The documentary delves into the emotions and reactions of the fans, players, and the media, and how the incident sparked a national debate.

The documentary features interviews with several key players involved in the event, including Steve Bartman, the fan who caught the foul ball and became the target of criticism and harassment from Cubs fans. The documentary reveals the trauma and psychological damage Bartman experienced after the event and how it affected his life.

Catching Hell also interviews other fans present during the game, who share their reactions and memories of the event. The film highlights the impact of the incident on Cubs fans and how they turned against Bartman, viewing him as the reason for the team's loss.

The documentary also features interviews with the media personalities who covered the event, including Bob Costas and Mike Wilbon. They reflect on how they reported on the incident and their responsibility in creating the frenzy around Bartman.

Gibney also explores the broader context of the event and the impact of the media in shaping public opinion. The documentary shows how the media sensationalized the event and made Bartman the scapegoat for the Cubs' loss, all while ignoring the team's poor performance in the game.

The documentary uses archival footage of the game and its aftermath, giving viewers a sense of the tension and drama of the moment. It also includes interviews with fans, psychologists, and experts on the psychology of sports fandom, offering insight into the social and cultural aspects of sports fanaticism.

Through its interviews and analysis, Catching Hell sheds light on the power dynamics and psychological phenomenon that underlie sports fandom. The movie builds a nuanced and complex picture of the event, revealing the human toll of fandom and the media's role in shaping public opinion.

Overall, Catching Hell is a poignant and thought-provoking exploration of the human side of sports and the impact of media on public perception. The documentary is a tribute to the emotional investment fans have in their favorite teams and the dangers of unchecked fanaticism.

Catching Hell
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  • Release Date
  • Runtime
    1 hr 42 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.9  (1,705)