Taron Egerton soars as the English ski jumping legend.
Some may actually remember this story out of the 88′ Winter Olympics, about a plucky English man who did everything in his power to make it to the Olympics as a competitor. The tale is certainly an interesting one. Eddie Edwards, who eventually becomes known as Eddie the Eagle, was an English skier who’s sole dream since he was a child was to be in the Olympics. The film follows his journey to accomplish that dream, no matter how far fetched it seemed at times. Hugh Jackman summed up Eddie’s story quite adequately when he introduced the film, saying “The story of Eddie, I think, is something every kid should see because I think we live in a world where often kids feel a lot of pressure to be LeBron James or Steve jobs or whatever. The story of Eddie is to say it kind of says you don’t have to win to be a winner in life. You have to find a thing you love. You have to make sure you do everything to make it happen.”
Dexter Fletcher, the director, seemed to have a very 80s centric vision for the film. Sure the underdog story, the outlandish colors and outfits and somewhat out there characters go hand in hand with anything set in the 80s, but the film itself felt like it came out of the 80s. I can’t remember the last time I saw several training montages set to 80s music, not to mention the way things sort of magically works itself out for our unlikely hero Eddie. His story is one where he is hit with many walls but you always get the feeling that somehow he’ll just get by it, regardless of whether or not you know how his story ends. He could’ve done more to build up tension, as the film is very relaxed and not very thrilling through some of Eddie’s defining moments. He sort of leaves it up to Taron Egerton to carry this film.
When Hugh Jackman said “The young kid, Taron Egerton, is an absolute revelation”, he wasn’t joking. Egerton’s performance was the gem of this movie. Hugh Jackman is on screen for a decent amount of time, but it was more or less up to Taron Egerton to basically carry this film. He captivates the audience with his lovable portrayal of Eddie. I’m not sure many other actors could’ve pulled off that performance to a point where the audience actually cares about him each time he takes a death defying ski jump or he hits an obstacle in his journey. If you watch this movie for anything, it’s to confirm Taron Egerton can act.
At the end of the day, this movie is very 80s, very heartwarming, and above all, very forgettable. You leave liking what you saw, but the next morning, you’d be hard fought to remember anything notable in the entire film other than Egerton’s performance of Eddie. If you’re one of those Olympic fans who remember Eddie, you may be interested in this film, as it gives a deep look into his life, however, if you’re not one of his or Egerton’s fans or you’re looking for a happy go lucky movie from the 80s, it’d be worth avoiding.