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4.4 out of 5 stars
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4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 28 December 2000
Being married to a football (USA) "nut", I really enjoyed this film. (The football in this film is "soccer" to us.) My husband and I watched it and he could see himself in many scenes. Colin Firth is a great actor, his frustration and love come through those gorgeous eyes of his. Ruth Gemmell was perfect also. I have not read the book, the film made us laugh and we did care about the characters. We had trouble with the English slang and other English eccentricities, like fans wearing red when their team wore yellow, we were confused at first but were able to catch-on. The actors were believable in their roles, it moved at a good pace, and Colin Firth was able to capture the man/boy conflict. Very enjoyable film.
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on 13 November 2008
It Really is NOT necessary to be an Arsenal Fan (A Gooner) to enjoy this film - as Nick Hornby manages to capture and portray what it is like to be 'A Football Fan' (The Heaven and Hell we all go through) - Regardless of who you might or might not support - As the film portrays the Highs, Lows, Agony and Ecstasy that most (true) Football fans go through each week, Month and Season.....whether your team be a Big Club or one of the Smaller Clubs - as it is all about the Passion and Love that one holds for ones own team - As Paul The main Character in the film observes how it's possible for your team/club to lift your spirits to the point of ecstasy and then bring you crashing back down to earth the next - which is what it is like being a Football fan.....and so if you are and regardless of whom you support, you will recognise yourself in this film - Providing you are a real football fan - and not an armchair - change your team from week - month type - who knows nothing of loyalty!..

This is a 6 Stars out of 5!
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on 10 September 2004
The book on which this film is based is by far Hornby's best - an almost allegorical depiction of father-son relationships that resonates with most men, especially those who grew up with estranged parents.
The film concentrates rather more on the love story, which means that viewers who don't know the book might conclude that Firth's character is just emotionally retarded and football obsessed, without understanding why. His "redemption" - the realisation that women are more important than football - therefore comes across as simplistic and seems designed to appeal primarily to female viewers (especially those who hate football!).
The good news is that, despite the dumbing down, the screenplay is excellently crafted and the actors play their roles with genuine depth. The pitch of the film (no pun intended) makes it ideal viewing for when curled up on the sofa with your loved one. But afterwards, make sure you read the book!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 20 October 2011
Teacher Paul is an obsessive football supporter, his love of Arsenal F.C. knows no bounds. Sarah, who teaches at the same school as Paul, has very little in common with Paul. Inevitably they fall for each other, and inevitably Paul's love of The Arsenal starts to drive them apart.

Nick Hornby is a very popular British writer whose other notable works comprise High Fidelity and About A Boy. With Fever Pitch he documented about the triumphant football season that Arsenal had in 1988/1989, while simultaneously outlaying his own stress inducing personal life that ran parallel with his football passion. In the novel, which became a monster seller, Hornby was able to perfectly form just how passionate and ridiculous the hardened football supporter can be {I've been there and done that myself thank you very much}, and tho some of it is expectedly lost in translation to the screen, the core essence is all there to make it a winning adaptation.

Tho laced with truly funny sequences and English soccer in jokes, Fever Pitch is also a most tender and heartfelt piece. Parential problems are handled tidily by director David Evans, and crucially the female axis in this male dominated story is very well portrayed. Both Hornby and Evans do however owe a big debt of gratitude to its leading stars. Colin Firth {Paul} and Ruth Gemmell {Sarah} are wonderful, both understated and both providing an intimacy that at first didn't seem possible. Coming as it does in this particular season, the film encompasses the Hillsborough tragedy that left 96 football supporters tragically killed. This is expertly handled by all involved, with Firth particularly towering whilst acting from an armchair as he comes to terms with both the events on the TV screen, and his query laden girlfriend. Which leaves us with what exactly? Well it's a very British film, and it was no surprise to see it remade as an American piece in 2005. Funny and tender probably best sums up this 1997 film, obviously not as good as the book they say, but it's a mighty fine effort regardless. 7/10
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The BLU RAY picture quality on "Fever Pitch" is surprisingly good - even beautiful in places - fans walking away from the London Highbury grounds - Colin Firth as Paul sat in a car at night waiting for his girl Sarah. And it's clean for the whole viewing too. I can tell you it never looked this fresh on DVD...

Even with his dreadful curly hair - Colin First exudes effortless charm as Paul Ashworth - an English teacher who has read Byron and is therefore not a Neanderthal. Mark Strong and Ruth Gemmell are particularly good as Steve - Paul's long-suffering football-loving mate - and Sarah the posh totty hapless Paul fancies. Bea Guard is luminous as Paul's sister and Sarah's friend and confidante in love. In fact given the general childishness of his character - Firth does well to win our hearts. With his Arsenal boxer shorts and constant babbling about the life-affirming importance of English Soccer - even if he is a bit of a klutz 99% of the time - we like him precisely because he is a nice guy - and deep down - Sarah knows it. She just wishes Paul would take his head out of the weekly score sheets every now and then and be a responsible adult - especially when she sees the colour blue displayed on another piece of kit - and were not talking about her away outfit...

There are also some nicely observed points about fathers and sons being able to bond on a common subject (Neal Pearson and Luke Aikman) - being with friends as you walk to and from the game. And that moment when you walk up the concrete steps to the terraces themselves - the pitch in front of you - the crowd's roar - when a live football game can feel like a magical Rock Concert every Saturday afternoon.

And when it finally comes to the end-of-season Arsenal Vs Spurs game on the 26th of May 1989 - the goal by Thomas that seals it for Arsenal in the final seconds sets up the great voice of Van Morrison as the local community pours out onto the streets of London in a frenzy - League Champions at last... It's pure cinematic joy...

In truth - the football-obsession stuff might test the patience of too many women - but "Fever Pitch" is that rare beast - a small movie with a big heart - and the actors to do Nick Hornby's witty and observant script the justice it deserves.

More to the point - if you're a fan of the movie you NEED to see it on BLU RAY. I've found this with a lot of the Channel 4 movies reissued on the format - despite how bad they look in standard def trailers - when you get to see the BR itself you find that someone has cleaned the print and given the movie a whole new lease of life. See my review for "Brassed Off" too...

A very, very good transfer onto BLU RAY then - and with full screen aspect too (no bars top or bottom).

Great fun and recommended like that Gunners tattoo on the left cheek of Margaret Thatcher's arse...

PS: Titles in this Channel 4 Series:
1. Brassed Off
2. East Is East
3. Fever Pitch
4. Gangster No. 1
5. Joe Strummer - The Future Is Unwritten
6. Life Is Sweet
7. A Room With A View
8. Shallow Grave
9. Touching The Void
10. The Warrior
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on 10 July 2008
This film is a love story, and an adaptation from a very good book. I dont care about football, but I'm a Colin Firth fan, and I trully enjoyed this film. Entertaining,and at the same time, complex and intelligent. Really good work. Understated film.
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on 3 January 2012
This film gets better with age, a real "must have" for any Arsenal fan. If you're a spurs or Liverpool fan, I'd imagine you wont like this. At all.
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on 11 April 2005
I thoroughly enjoyed this film, despite having no interest in league football whatsoever. It almost made me interested in it! Colin Firth is on excellent form, with strong support from the rest of the cast. Good script too from author Nick Hornby, though things are tied up a bit too neatly at the end. All in all though, a good little British film, which presumably will receive more attention when the American remake with Drew Barrymore turns up.
The dvd is nothing to shout about. Picture quality is good, as is the sound as far as I could tell. Bizarrely, my dvd player didn't display the running time throughout the film. It simply said: "Play". Not sure if that's just my player or what, but it is a fairly old disk now by today's standards. Extras are limited to the trailer and 16 photos in a small gallery.
If you can get it for under a fiver, then it's definitely worth a look.
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on 28 January 2004
I'm an American, and I'm totally baffled by the Byzantine world of English soccer, but I have to say, I love this film.
As a Cleveland Browns fan, I can totally identify with Colin Firth's character's staggeringly loyal devotion to a team that dissapoints year, after year, after year.
As for soccer getting in the way of his emotional development...I thought it was funny! To those of you who had a problem with this, and the way the film ended, I say, get yourself a sense of humor!
Hilarious movie. I highly recommend it.
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on 24 February 2016
Heard about the book nut never got to read it, and watched it with my wife who's interested in my interest in soccer. Great movie about the feeling football evokes, the passion, the roller coaster life of the fan. She and I where glued to the film. excellent acting, and it even calmed me a little as a fan of a team in my country who's fortunes are really down - if Arsenal can fans can wait 18 years, I guess we can too. I even remember seeing the 2-0 match as a youngster and jumping from joy although not an arsenal fan. Really good film, and again, didn't read the book but I believe it did fair to the book.
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