A reporter hired to write the 'official' biography of Ty Cobb discovers just how dark the baseball legend's real story is.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
...
Ray
Scott Burkholder ...
Allan Malamud ...
Mud
Bill Caplan ...
Jeff Fellenzer ...
Doug Krikorian ...
Gavin Smith ...
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Tyler Logan Cobb ...
Young Ty
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Storyline

Al Stump is a famous sports-writer chosen by Ty Cobb to co-write his official, authorized 'autobiography' before his death. Cobb, widely feared and despised, feels misunderstood and wants to set the record straight about 'the greatest ball-player ever,' in his words. However, when Stump spends time with Cobb, interviewing him and beginning to write, he realizes that the general public opinion is largely correct. In Stump's presence, Cobb is angry, violent, racist, misogynistic, and incorrigibly abusive to everyone around him. Torn between printing the truth by plumbing the depths of Cobb's dark soul and grim childhood, and succumbing to Cobb's pressure for a whitewash of his character and a simple baseball tale of his greatness, Stump writes two different books. One book is for Cobb, the other for the public. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Everyone hated this baseball legend. And he loved it.

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language, and for scenes of nudity and violent behavior | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

2 December 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cobb - A Lenda  »

Box Office

Gross:

$1,007,583 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tommy Lee Jones and Lolita Davidovich previously appeared in The Big Town (1987) and JFK (1991). See more »

Goofs

In the panoramic shot of of downtown Reno, modern-day casinos are visible that did not exist when Ty Cobb lived in the area. See more »

Quotes

Al Stump: I gotta put your family in my book.
Ty Cobb: Your book? MY book! And nothing about my ex-wives or my children is going to be in it. My book is about baseball!
Al Stump: My book is about Cobb.
Ty Cobb: Cobb is Baseball!
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits are complete and the screen is black, Jones is heard to say "Baseball was 100% of my life." See more »

Connections

Featured in Sports on the Silver Screen (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Visit to the Wreckage
from Alien³ (1992)
Written by Elliot Goldenthal
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User Reviews

a disturbing bio-pic that tries (and achieves) a visceral reaction
21 November 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Under-rated and under-seen at the time of its original release, Cobb is the kind of sports film that would be un-watchable if it weren't made with such care to the dramatic side of things. Ron Shelton, responsible for such films as Bull Durham and Play it to the Bone, takes the story of finding a story as the basis for this tale of the legend Ty Cobb. Stump (Roberto Wuhl, pre-Arliss) takes on the task of writing a biography of one of the most notorious players of baseball, and when he meets him and starts to know him, he's almost scared to death. We learn from Cobb himself (in Tommy Lee Jones' equivalent to Robert De Niro in Raging Bull) about his early years, his personal life to a degree (some of this is in detail, some of it's just in creative little snippets later on in the film), but not a whole lot about baseball. But what is known practically sums up the man- he felt a thrill in torturing the offensive team and getting jeered as he broke records (some of which may still stand today). As the story progresses, the relationship between Stump and Cobb is what becomes the focal point, and it's a tense, depressing, and oddly exciting path.

The details in the story, not of the flattering sort by any measure, give the film an appeal that would've been lost if it were one of those straight-to-TV movies where you'd only get hints of the man's nature. By way of the writer getting a story, Shelton brings revelatory points that are rather interesting, of occasionally off-putting. It's hard to imagine what it would be like to ride with Cobb, but watching it this way brings on a visceral reaction, at least from me. I first saw this film when I was younger when it was first on HBO, and I saw it again recently. As a case in psychology, it's a good movie. As a portrait of disintegration it's even better. But if you're thinking of getting a news-reel portraying only his accomplishments, look elsewhere. I'm not sure if Ty Cobb was a great baseball player, but the film doesn't spare him at least some praise in that area. That Jones steals the show is no surprise either. A-


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