Let’s be honest about the 2012 World Series Film: It’s a victory lap for the fans.
It starts with what we all know: the Giants won the World Series. There’s no suspense, but then, there probably shouldn’t be. We know it, and so will everyone else who watches this. It’s not a history lesson.
The film is narrated by Benjamin Bratt, who I frankly didn’t know was a Giants fan until this playoff run. He does a really good job, and his narration is interspersed by various commentator highlights and interviews from the players.
The film’s first 20 minutes or so talks about the leadup to the World Series. Spring training, and losing Brian Wilson early on. It touches on the All-Star Game, though I’m a bit disappointed they didn’t mention who that first inning was against, considering the storyline that would come around in the World Series. It also spends a little time mentioning Melky Cabrera, more than I expected, but it doesn’t linger. It spends more time on the team’s second half surge.
Once things get into the playoffs, things pick up. Each of the first two rounds get a fair amount of time, especially the talk around Pence firing up the team. It’s the first moment that the film feels personal to the Giants, and the film focuses on the Giants’ highlights.
Still, overall, the film seems to race through everything leading up to the World Series. There is almost no talk of what happened elsewhere in the playoffs either, even in Detroit’s own special run against the A’s and Yankees. It makes sense that they want to focus on the Fall Classic, but the context of the rest of playoffs, with the A’s getting all the attention in late September, the ‘infield fly,’ the sweep of the Yankees, and so forth, seemed to be missing to me. The Tigers get about 37 seconds of lip service to what they did, and that’s it.
The first thing you notice about the movie when it hits the World Series is that the Tigers were interviewed as well. Throughout the first part of the film, you don’t get any viewpoints other than the Giants. It’s refreshing to hear what the other side was thinking.
In the World Series, this film finally feels complete. It takes its time in each game, talking about each of the players and talks about more than just the biggest moments. It uses the best footage from the Fox crew and others, with lots of slow motion, and lots of beauty shots of the crowd. And while it spends a lot of time on each game, now it feels like it goes by too fast just because you’re enjoying it.
The editing is beautifully done, and it doesn’t feel disjointed at all as it switches from interviews to game footage, from the present to the past and back. And especially in the World Series, where you get to hear Fox, Detroit’s radio team and of course the Giants broadcast team, it’s the best of all worlds.
Of course, the film itself isn’t the end-all of this disc. It also holds the complete Game 7 of the NLCS, all the Pence-multi-hitting, rain-soaked glory. And, like the World Series Box Sets of past and present, it includes the radio feeds as well as Fox’s broadcasters, so you can turn off Buck and enjoy it otherwise. The World Series Box Set doesn’t include this game, so the World Series film is almost a must-have to include and complete all of the big postseason games.
The disc packs a surprising level of special features, though they’re mostly short and disappointing. There are a few ‘Caught Looking’ features focusing on the big Giants names. They’re only a few minutes long each, but give nice little looks at the players. There’s the final out of the Giants clinching the NL West, which is disappointingly short. It shows the final play and about a minute of the celebration, but none of the victory lap around the field. The World Series final out and celebration is more inclusive. It has a couple minutes of Joe Buck talking and mostly TV footage, but it also gives about a minute of the champagne spraying in the locker room. The World Series Parade is about four minutes of the parade, but none of the speeches. The most interesting piece is the “Postseason Highlights” roll. It’s not truly all the highlights, it’s only the clinching moments against the Reds and Cardinals. No Buster Grand Slam, no Pablo Sandoval home runs (although his three home runs are included in a different special feature). Apparently, the clinching moments are the only good ones.
The best special feature isn’t listed: in the end credits, several of the players who are interviewed give their best Hunter Pence impressions. Not only are they hilarious, but Pence got shown the imitations and he has a ball with it as well.
As I said before, this is the Victory Lap for the Giants and their fans. This isn’t here to educate, it’s here to relive the best moments. Any Giants fan will love this, for getting through the offseason, or remembering the best moments years from now. If you’re a Giants fan, I can’t recommend this enough for you to get, even with my quibbles with it.
Don’t forget, you can get your own copy from us! Just post your favorite moment from 2012 on our Facebook Wall or Tweet it to us by December 11th, and you’ll be entered in a drawing for your choice of a Blu-Ray or a DVD of both the World Series Film and the World Series Box Set! Give it as a gift or keep it for yourself! Get more information here: Cyber Monday Contest