Release Date: February 26, 2016
Director: Dexter Fletcher
Writer: Sean Macaulay, Simon Kelton
Cast: Taron Egerton, Hugh Jackman, Christopher Walken, Jo Hartley, Tim McInnerny, Edvin Endre, Rune Temte, Anastasia Harrold, Lasco Atkins, Jessica Williams, Ania Sowinski, Daniel Ings, Mads Sjogard Pettersen, Daniel Westwood, Mac Pietowski, Tony Paul West, Russell Balogh, Marc Benjamin, Bron James, Tomasz Dabrowski, Jassie Mortimer, Katie Hudson, Graham Fletcher-Cook
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 105 minutes
Production Company: Marv Films, Saville Productions, Studio Babelsberg, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Genre: Biography, Comedy, Drama
Country: UK, USA, Germany
There’s no shock value to what’s expected. You’re familiar with its presence, and it makes you comfortable. It’s appreciated and welcomed, but can also run its course becoming tiresome. So when something new comes along, you have more to react to and enjoy. It goes the same with underdogs. Many people like to be surprised, especially when the thought behind such emotions is backed up with passion and love. You gain a respect for all parties involved due to their effort. Those parties who just wanted to participate with no regrets, then have the ability to look back smiling saying they gave one hundred percent. It’s a satisfying feeling, and even more satisfying when the story is true. Eddie the Eagle is a prime example of all of that. A boy with a dream and the will power to never give up. The direction behind the film highlights these attributes to a high level, which makes it impossible not to smile as it ends.
Eddie Edwards (Taron Egerton) possibly wrote the book on innocence. From the first moment he pops on screen you’re onboard with his character. He’s trying to be the best he can be, and does so in hilarious fashion. As a child he was truly inspired to be great, even if some of his handicaps made it difficult. When he grew to a young man, he came across as someone that couldn’t hurt a fly and would try to turn in one million dollars cash, even if the rightful owner couldn’t be identified. Bronson Peary (Hugh Jackman) was just an average guy in my eyes. There was nothing too special about his character or the casting choice of Mr. Jackman. I hope it didn’t cost the studio too much to include him in the role, because there was nothing too spectacular about his involvement. Anyone could’ve filled those shoes, and I feel he’s done this before. It may have been me wanting to have as much love for his character as I did Eddie, but comparing the two, Eddie is much more fascinating; which is probably why he’s the main star of the film.
They made an interesting pair, making me laugh throughout the film. The silly banter between the two of them was cute and genuine. They both were brutally honest with each other, and any disagreement they might of had felt real. Though this is a fun movie based on a true story, it doesn’t have many obstacles to overcome. Usually there is the idea that’s presented, a plan to execute, the rise of the characters, their falling out, then the inevitable make up towards the end leading to the triumph. This film had most of that, but a different flavor than I’m used to. It contained an element of happiness that will definitely raise spirits, which comes from the magical mind of director Dexter Fletcher, and producer Matthew Vaughn.
Fletcher is the director, and this isn’t the first time Vaughn and Egerton have teamed up, and I’m glad to know it’s not going to be their last. They make a great pair between actor and director. Vaughn is one of my favorite directors right now, and he knows how to make average material appear greater than what it really is. Through his visionary skillset he can craft a film about preparing peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, but turn it into an inspiring epic. I felt his vision all over this film. He could film a man ironing his work clothes, but edit it in a way that makes you excited about going to work, even if you hate your job. He knows how to connect to the audience and make them feel good about the smallest things. The scores he chooses, along with the shots, and tight editing can really turn a frown upside down, and that’s what he did with Eddie the Eagle.
I’ve never been into skiing, but the next time I’m flipping through channels and see a competition on the slopes I might stop and watch. Fletcher was able to show the difficulty of the sport and all of the small intricacies that go with it. From his timing, dialogue choice, and effort, I was able to put myself in the shoes of Eddie hoping I could fly like an eagle. He made a film to where no matter how hard the obstacle, losing can be just as satisfying as winning if you give it your all. The way he slowed down certain events just to catch a glimpse of emotion was priceless. The slow moments made me smile beyond ear to ear. For someone to receive LAST place in the winter Olympics, but be remembered as a hero, speaks volumes to their character. I’m happy to say there was a director out there to frame the story properly, leaving me with the attitude that I can accomplish anything. His style alone makes you feel great, and no matter what you’re going through, this film will heighten your mood.