|Photo: Chris White|
Based on true events, Dexter Fletcher's film opens with a young Michael "Eddie" Edwards dreaming of becoming an Olympic athlete - even to the point of leaving home in the middle of the night, telling his supportive mother (Jo Hartley) that he's "going to the Olympics." Eddie "trains" for the games all through his childhood, breaking pair after pair of eye glasses - and the occasional window. Fed up with Eddie's shenanigans, Eddie's father, Terry (Keith Allen) tells him that he's not an athlete. Terry then takes Eddie to work to show him the ropes hoping he'll forget about his aspirations. But it backfires when Eddie sees the slopes and wants to become a ski jumper.
Fast forward a bit and now Eddie (Taron Egerton) is 23 years old. He still has the aspirations he had a young chap and continues to follow them despite his doubtful father. With the help of a rebellious coach (Hugh Jackman), Eddie trains - for real this time - to make Team Great Britain for the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary. If Eddie makes it, he'd become the first ski jumper to represent the Brits in the Games. But the British establishment doesn't want him to compete even though he's done all he needs to make the team. Together with his coach, Eddie fights off the establishment, proves the doubters wrong and wins the hearts of fans around the world.
I didn't know that much about the Eddie Edwards story going into viewing the film. Which, I guess, is good so I could look at it with fresh eyes. I enjoyed the film overall. It had the perfect balance of drama and humor and I agree with many of the critics who called it a "feel good" film. Not to mention, Egerton and Jackman give standout performances and demonstrate a strong chemistry on screen. Eddie the Eagle is a positive, breath of fresh air that you'll be sorry if you miss.
I Give It A: B+
Check Out the Trailer Here