Urban Cinefile
William Kellys War
 The World of Film in Australia - on the Internet Updated Thursday, October 23, 2014 - Edition No 920 

Search SEARCH FOR A REVIEW
Our Review Policy OUR REVIEW POLICY
Printable page PRINTABLE PAGE

Newsletter Options - Registration is FREE Help/Contact

SUMMER CATCH

SYNOPSIS:
Ryan Dunne (Freddie Prinze Jr) mows lawns for the rich residents of Chatham, Cape Cod. He dreams of becoming a professional baseball player and receives his chance to impress talent scouts when selected to play for the Chatham A team in summer competition. While pitching for his future, Ryan finds romance with Tenley Parrish (Jessica Biel), whose wealthy father (Bruce Davison) is determined to sabotage their relationship.


Review by Richard Kuipers:
Yawn. Summer Catch is an instantly forgettable romantic comedy that fancies itself as a younger slice of Bull Durham. Unfortunately Freddie Prinze Jr is no Tim Robbins and Beverly D'Angelo, appearing unbilled as an older woman who likes to have sex with as many rookies as the summer will allow, is definitely no Susan Sarandon. This is just a plain old retread of how a poor boy from the wrong side of the tracks falls in love with a rich girl whose father has mapped out a life for her that excludes rough trade hunks who ride lawnmowers for a living. Naturally the boy is a prodigiously talented sportsman but needs to overcome his mother's death, his father's distant gruffness and his loser brother's taunts before he can make good on all that potential. Summer Catch would be a harmless enough date movie but there's something nasty about what these sex and money-obsessed boys find funny. Barely a minute goes by without some degrading put-down of women who are seen here as feckless pieces of meat whose sole purpose in life is to become a baseball groupie. While not hanging out at the bar in between games the bland Prinze and the sparky Biel (who's too good for this movie) manage a couple of sweet moments but it's never too long before the dull frathouse antics of these hopeless hopefuls start again. Fred Ward, as Prinze's father and Brian Dennehy as the tough-as-nails coach add a little prestige on the perimeter but there's nothing we haven't seen before and much better in the middle. Don't worry if you forget any important dialogue along the way - half of it returns with echo chamber effects at key moments just in case any 10 year-olds in the audience are confused by the mentally taxing plot. One of my pet hates in life and on screen is chewing gum and Summer Catch contains more chomping of this vile substance than any film in recent memory. Another reason to give it a wide berth.



Email this article

CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 1
Mixed: 0

SUMMER CATCH (M)
(US)

CAST: Freddie Prinze Jr., Courtney Driver, Jessica Biel, Matthew Lillard, Brian Dennehy

PRODUCER: Brian Robbins, Michael Tollin, Sam Weisman

DIRECTOR: Michael Tollin

SCRIPT: Kevin Falls

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Tim Suhrstedt

EDITOR: Harvey Rosenstock

MUSIC: George Fenton

PRODUCTION DESIGN: John D. Kretschmer

RUNNING TIME: 103 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: May 9, 2002 (Sydney/Melbourne)







SciFi Film Festival
Urban Cinefile 1997 - 2014