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Babe Ruth:
The Life Behind the Legend

As its title implies, this video attempts to go beyond the public persona of one of major league baseball's greatest stars. Accepting Ruth as a larger-than-life figure, this 59-minute video doesn't attempt to rationalize, apologize, or analyze his behavior. Rather, it endeavors to present an unbiased account of the life of George Herman Ruth, contradictions and all. Here was an individual who was at once self-indulgent -- he reportedly had an enormous appetite for wine, women, song, as well as food -- and yet was capable of performing many charitable acts. Produced by HBO Studios in 1999, the video also examines Ruth's athletic career: the pitching prowess he demonstrated with the Boston Red Sox, the seemingly super-human batting skills he displayed during his greatest years with the New York Yankees, the 714 career home runs, and the years of decline. The video also places Ruth's career in a historical context, revealing him to be very much a man of his era -- the Roaring '20s.