Knuckleball! (2012)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Knuckleball! is the story of a few good men, a handful of pitchers in the entire history of baseball forced to resort to the lowest rung on the credibility ladder in their sport: throwing a ball so slow and unpredictable that no one wants anything to do with it. The film follows the Major League's only knuckleballers in 2011, Boston Red Sox Tim Wakefield and New York Met R.A. Dickey, as they pursue a mercurial art form in a world that values speed, accuracy, and numerical accountability. With … More

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Documentary, Sports & Fitness
Directed By: , ,
Written By: Anne Sundberg, Christine Schomer, Ricki Stern
In Theaters:
On DVD: Apr 2, 2013
Independent Pictures - Official Site

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Critic Reviews for Knuckleball!

All Critics (17) | Top Critics (9)

Nonfans, however, are about to find out exactly what the phrase inside baseball means.

Full Review… | March 11, 2013
Time Out
Top Critic

The sweet achievement of "Knuckleball!," Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg's documentary about this quixotic pitch and the quixotic men who throw it, is that it gives both sides equal play.

Full Review… | September 20, 2012
Boston Globe
Top Critic

With elements of "Moneyball" and a twist of the narrative arm, this look at how Tim Wakefield and R.A. Dickey became knuckleball experts is a real kick.

Full Review… | September 20, 2012
New York Daily News
Top Critic

A first-rate sports documentary in any season.

Full Review… | September 20, 2012
New York Times
Top Critic

There's plenty of real drama in this movie without Stern and Sundberg having to pump it up.

Full Review… | September 20, 2012
AV Club
Top Critic

Considers one of baseball's greatest quirks with good humor and a glancing touch.

Full Review… | September 19, 2012
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Knuckleball!


While there there might be more informative documentaries than "Knuckleball!" it does have some good stories to tell that do not sugarcoat any of the pitchers' struggles while also stressing that baseball is more than just empty statistics, however gaudy they may be. In the case of Aroldis Chapman, extremely gaudy. At the other end of the velocity spectrum of pitchers comes quite possibility the last knuckleballers, Tim Wakefield and R.A. Dickey, who the documentary follows for the 2011 season. Since pitching is like real estate in that it is all about location, location and location, a knuckleball can be very effective despite its low relative velocity because not even the pitcher is sure of where it is exactly going. At its worst, the pitch does not move and you have batting practice which can give ulcers to managers and pink slips to pitchers. Explaining all of this well is knuckleball practitioners from the past including Jim Bouton and Tom Candiotti. And my favorite part of the documentary is a roundtable between Wakefield, Dickey, Phil Niekro and Charlie Hough, also a mentor to Dickey. While it is also fun to see old videos of the featured pitchers, the best part had yet to come for R.A. Dickey in his all-star 2012 season, just having won his 19th game of the season yesterday. That having been said, I would have liked to have seen more of the literature loving, subway riding and mountain climbing part of his personality that makes him sound so interesting.

Walter M.

Super Reviewer

Solid doc, gets the job done, so to speak. Wish it had gone more into why so feel pitchers try being knuckleballers (you'd think all of the washed up minor league pitchers would give it a shot to prolong their careers). This would be a good special for ESPN to air.


An excellent documentary on knuckleballers and their careers, especially Tim Wakefield and R.A. Dickey. It has a great focus on their lives and families, which is a nice touch. Worth checking out for any fan of baseball.

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