In the world of 2016, we’ve seen football and basketball ratings outpace almost all other televised events, but the boys of summer weren’t ready to go down without a fight. What better way to combat those other sports by seeing two teams heading to the biggest games of the year with a combined 176 years drought since their last championship win as the Cleveland Indians faced off against the Chicago Cubs. And now we can re-live those nail-biting moments with the 2016 World Series film released by Shout Factory.
When I was a kid, baseball was a big part of my life. I loved watching the game, with the Oakland Athletics and the Los Angeles Dodgers as my favorite teams. I enjoyed playing the game as well, despite never excelling, I won a few spirit awards. Sadly, as I grew into my teen years, the MLB battled with strikes and other scandals, turning me off from the game. About four years ago, after spending time with a big fan, my love for the game re-surfaced.
Following that season, I went on a journey. In order to make the off season seem as short as possible, I sought out as many baseball movies and documentaries as I could. After almost 50 movies, that off season felt short, but I also fulfilled my love of seeing as many underdog stories as possible. And as this season few to a close, we were seeing two teams that have long been considered underdogs when it comes to winning the World series facing off.
With the second longest Championship drought, the Cleveland Indians hadn’t won the World Series since 1948. Their opponents this year were the longest drought of the Cubs, who last won in 1908, and haven’t had the opportunity to play in one since 1945. Both have battled “curses” but both were hungry for this Series.
Narrated by Vince Vaughn, this documentary starts out with the sequence of the series that was the most tense for both teams. Game 7, the score tied as they are set to go into extra innings, and the game is temporarily placed on hold for a rain delay. Setting the stage with a scene that gave so many people near coronaries, we then rewind to see how we got there. Focusing on players from both sides, we get a tightly edited run down of all seven games, with insight, behind the scenes moments, and a little fun on and off the field.
In a Series this fueled by die-hard fans, it was also great that the film showed the fans reactions to pivotal plays, them getting ready for the game in superstitious ways not unlike the players themselves. And to be able to see the outcome and how the fans celebrated was the icing on the cake.
The film hit my baseball movie needs. I saw underdogs come from behind with a voracious spirit. I saw people learn from their mistakes. And I saw some incredible baseball being played. This one would have made Harry Caray proud!
On December 6th, Shout Factory is releasing the 2016 World Series film in a Blu-ray/DVD/Digital set, and then on December 13th, they are releasing an 8 disc Blu-ray set which includes the full 7 games in all their HD glory, with 4 optional audio tracks (the original TV broadcast, the Cleveland Indians radio feed, the Chicago Cubs radio feed, or a Spanish audio track).