Parents' Guide to

Summer Catch

By Brian Costello, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Sex, drinking, language in dated baseball romcom.

Movie PG-13 2001 104 minutes
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This is a dated romcom that's also trying to be equal parts sex comedy and baseball movie. Of the three, Summer Catch works best as a baseball movie, as there's an authority in the writing that shows the screenwriters know what they're talking about, at least as it pertains to the baseball scene in and around the villages of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The sex comedy parts come across like something from the randy teen sex comedies of the early 1980s, and feel as forced as the romcom elements between working-class Prinze and blue-blood Biel. There's also a subplot involving one of the players and his relationship with a local "plus-sized" woman, with a whole slew of jokes, most often delivered by Matthew Lillard's catcher character, that are excruciating and fat-shaming, in spite of an attempt to salvage said fat-shaming near the end that doesn't really make it any better.

There was probably a decent coming-of-age story in this, but it instead morphed into a forced and awkward romcom, with plot points that feel shoehorned in to fit the logic of a cliched story of a rich girl/poor boy romance. And when that isn't happening, and when baseball isn't happening, we get Lillard's character, a few beers in at the bar, making an endless series of uninspired sexual entendres to Prinze's character like "mow her lawn." It's a movie from a different time, and if you've never heard of it, it might be because it was released less than a month before 9/11, and it's best to just leave it in 2001.

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