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Fever Pitch

One-quarter documentary and three-quarters drama that purports to be an anti-gambling film, FEVER PITCH commences like a PBS special on how much money is wagered in the US. Then the story begins. Ryan O'Neal is a sports columnist for a Los Angeles newspaper and is investigating the world of illegal gambling as well as the legitimate gambling enterprises in Las Vegas. His investigations lead him into becoming a gambler himself, and he is soon in hock for almost $90,000 to some bent-nosers. It's all a mish-mash, but what makes it totally spurious are some scenes at Gamblers Anonymous. The end credits of the film have a "thank you" to the National Council on Compulsive Gambling, but this movie is hardly more than a promotional 95 minutes on the subject. It waffles constantly, and we never know if the creators are for or against gambling.