45 Years of Amazin'
Distributed By: Genius Entertainment
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
A few months ago, I wrotean article lamenting the loss of two of New York’s landmark stadiums – Shea Stadium and Yankee Stadium. Of course, being a New York Mets fan, it will be Shea Stadium that I will miss the most. It seemed like the perfect stadium to me. There was no seat in the house that could be considered a bad seat – you could see perfectly from wherever you were able to purchase a ticket. I loved the smells, the sounds (yes, I even loved the airplanes flying overhead) and I loved the history. There was a certain sort of magic felt by anyone who entered those gates at Shea Stadium, a magic that I felt could never be duplicated by the new Citi Field (ugh – I do so hate that name!). My brother, a Mets fan himself, must know my pain, because he bought me the Shea Goodbye: 45 Years of Amazin’ DVD for Christmas. I couldn’t wait to watch this tribute to my favorite stadium.
Narrated by Mets fan Matthew Broderick, Shea Goodbye is a 76-minute documentary highlighting some of the most memorable moments in Shea Stadium. We learn the reasoning behind the name of the stadium, the last minute touches that almost delayed the stadium’s opening, the various teams that used the stadium over the years, the various musicians who played at Shea, the numerous world leaders who visited the stadium and more. We get to watch the most amazing moments in Mets history, viewing footage from the various playoffs and World Series games played at Shea. Former team members offer their insights into the history of the club and their feelings about the stadium. Sportscasters offer up their sentiments about the stadium as well.
What is most important about this documentary is that it doesn’t just celebrate the special moments at the stadium. It also celebrates the people who made the stadium great…and not just the players. This documentary celebrates the fans as well. Viewers are treated to a special look at Casey Stengel who won the fans over and kept them coming to the ballpark. We are given insight into the “You gotta believe!” logo in a tribute to pitcher Tug McGraw. And best of all, we are reminded that without the fans, there would be no New York Mets. Fans, young and old, of all walks of life, of every nationality have visited Shea Stadium time and time again to root for their favorite team.
The Shea Goodbye DVD offers up some neat extras, allowing fans to witness footage from very pivotal moments in Mets history. These include the final outs of the 1969 and 1986 World Series, the Mets clinching the NL East Pennant in 2006 and more. Basically, the DVD extras are expanded footage of events already covered in the documentary.
I absolutely loved Shea Goodbye! I loved learning more about the history of the stadium and the teams that played there. I loved the staff, sportscaster and fan commentary. I loved watching those historic moments. The only thing I didn’t enjoy was that the documentary jumped around quite a bit. There seemed to be no chronological order as to how events in the stadium’s history were discussed. We talked about the building of the stadium and suddenly we were discussing the 1986 World Series and I wondered why they had skipped the 1969 World Series. Just as suddenly we were back in 1969, but then we were in the year 2000. Chronologically, this documentary jumped all over the place. However, despite all of the jumping around, I would still recommend this DVD to any New York Mets fan.
As I sit here lamenting the loss of my favorite stadium, I can take heart in the fact that I can catch a glimpse of it any time I want by simply popping my Shea Goodbye DVD into the player. Ah, the memories!