Film review: Eddie the Eagle

Missus Dom and me have an arrangement: one of us gets to pick a movie and then the other picks the next one. I squandered my turn on Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice, and I’m still wondering if Eddie the Eagle would have been  a better choice…

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Some of you might remember Eddie ‘the Eagle’ Edwards: the British ski-jumper who entered the 1988 Winter games at Calgary. Eddie had very little going for him aside from iron gonads and a ‘must try’ attitude. He didn’t do very well of course, but the world loves an underdog, so for most of 1988, the world loved Eddie the Eagle.

So much so, it appears, that someone decided that a biopic based loosely around Eddie’s adventures at the Calgary Games might be a bit of a seller.

The smart move was casting Hugh Jackman as Eddie’s fictional jump coach and Keith Allen as Eddie’s less-than-encouraging dad. The less-than-smart move was not focussing a little more on the script: it was a bit clunky throughout, and the actors had to work quite hard to make the comedy moments work – and often they just didn’t. At one point, Jackman does his own take on the famous ‘orgasm’ scene from When Harry Met Sally.

No Hugh, just… just… no.

I have to say though, the fictional Norwegian team were hilarious, and I’m always pleased to see Christopher Walken crop up in any movie, even if it just a walk-on part.

And some of the crash scenes – ouch!

Weirdly, I did enjoy it; I thought I wouldn’t (as I often don’t with Missus Dom’s choices), but the movie didn’t pretend to be any more than it was: a light-hearted, feel-good pic with a happy ending. My low expectations were more than met, and I’m really pleased about that because Eddie’s story is quite extraordinary.

Six out of ten.

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