A Crosstown Classic Story, by Chicago-based filmmaker Bryan Bankovich, is an ethnographic comedy in cinema-verite style that has impassioned Cubs and White Sox fans speaking frankly about each other.
Shot outside Wrigley and Cellular fields during the six-game series in 2008, the footage reveals that pitting one city's two teams against each other has the power to spontaneously incite camaraderie amid violence.
The sounds in this half-hour documentary are unmistakable: Street vendors hawk programs and scorecards with a Midwestern lilt. Saxophonists, drummers, car horns and foghorns are a backdrop to the put-downs in the parking lot where hot dogs and booze are consumed with the same enthusiasm they bring to the grandstand. The Cubs icon Ronnie Woo-woo punctures his traditional cheer with a cry of, "Obama! '08."
Released one year later, A Crosstown Classic Story magnifies those historic moments when disputes over power and recognition have spawned bitter rivals and sweet victories.
Here's a movie that makes no apologies for its actors' bad behavior. It celebrates defeat alongside triumph. It's the unscripted story of strange characters, hustlers and home-grown allegiances. It's six afternoons at the ballpark when the Cubs hope to nab their first title in 100 years, and Sox fans sweep it away.
As one fan says, "It's Chicago, baby. The world wishes they were here."