'Baseball's Last Hero: 21 Clemente Stories' blends baseball with a redemptive story of sacrifice. In the words of the Gospel of John, "Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends..." These words from scripture inspire Puerto Rican baseball superstar Roberto Clemente to make a difference, to die giving. The film traces the life of the greatest right fielder of all time, as he faces and overcomes the racist reporters of the Pittsburgh Press and struggles to prove his talents despite the baseball writers conspiring to cheat him out of his due recognition. Baseball's Last Hero is a love story at his core. Roberto meets the love of his life, Vera, and they create a family, a safe haven for Roberto who is plagued by nightmares and a growing sense he will die young. Roberto's love for the poor compels him on a mission of mercy. On New Year's Eve 1972, following eighteen magnificent seasons in the major leagues, Roberto Clemente dies a hero's death, killed in a plane crash as he attempts to deliver food and medical supplies to Nicaragua after a devastating earthquake. Clemente is a work of artistry in a game too often defined by scorecards. During his career with the Pittsburgh Pirates, he leads his team to championships in 1960 and 1971, getting a hit in all fourteen World Series games in which he plays. His career ends with three thousand hits, the magical three-thousandth coming in his final at-bat. In his final years, his faith grows. To Clemente, wealth and fame are created to be resources of compassion to those less fortunate. His moral global responsibility extends beyond the playing field. "Baseball's Last Hero" retraces Clemente's final days, from the earthquake to the accident, the mission of mercy that exemplifies his commitment to sacrifice. At a time when athletes are in the headlines for greed and steroid abuse, the movie is at once a call for modern day heroes who will dedicate themselves to service and an introspective look at ourselves.
- Written by
Richard Rossi Writer-Director
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