Scott Hardie: “It ruled.”

[Ending spoilers ahead.] Complementing Drew Barrymore's instant likeability as an actress is her shrewd business sense: As a producer, she knows how to put her endearing nature to good use in film projects. "Fever Pitch" is hardly the most cold-and-calculated romantic comedy ever made, but its obvious cross-gender appeal and refusal to break with genre convention guarantee that it will please audiences and make its star/producer even richer. There's a lot to like about it, including Nick Hornby's well-turned phrases and the surprising ease with which the forever grinning Jimmy Fallon slips into the lead role, matching Barrymore's winsomeness. If I have a major complaint about the film beyond its genre-formula structure, it's that it ends too abruptly: Within thirty seconds of the film's beginning, the voiceover narration notes that the film takes place during the Red Sox's championship 2004 season, but that final stunning victory comes within the final thirty seconds of the film, seeming as hurriedly tacked-on as the ending actually was. Perhaps the film is better off as a rental, where you can enjoy the original ending that the filmmakers intended.

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