Full of charm, a never-say-die moral and dashes of humour, Eddie The Eagle is an inspiring tale about following your dreams and never giving up. Whilst it doesn’t achieve anything that breaks the mould of the inspiring tales that have come before, its told with enough confidence to deliver a satisfying experience nonetheless.
Inspired by true events, Michael “Eddie” Edwards (Taron Egerton) stars as the courageous, athletically inept ski jumper who, with the help of his charismatic coach (Hugh Jackman), embarks on a journey to try and get into the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics. Throughout the story, its easy to root for Eddie and his audacious defiance in the face of everyone telling him he can’t achieve his dreams and it makes his journey all the more satisfying as he takes steps toward achieving it. The pace does dip a little in the middle and feels a little slow but thankfully, it doesn’t detract too much from the film.
Both Hugh Jackman and Taron Egerton are great here and their chemistry together helps to fill the film with much needed charm to accompany the underdog tale. There’s some touching moments between the two that helps to solidify their bond and the humour used throughout is placed perfectly and not overbearing. There’s enough comic relief here to stop it sinking into heavy drama but enough self awareness to avoid overdoing it and falling into slapstick comedy. Its a delicate balance and one that Eddie The Eagle gets right.
Of course, for all its positives there’s no denying that the film is generic and stays very close to the cliche tropes you’d find in this category. If you’ve seen any of the underdog sport films where the individual or team defy odds to rise to the top, you’ve seen this film. For anyone after something with a little more flair or innovation, Eddie The Eagle is neither. Its a good film but its equally just as forgettable.
Overall then, Eddie The Eagle is a fun ride while it lasts but it never quite reaches the heights of being great. Its simple tale is told with confidence, weaving a good use of humour and drama together while the combination of Jackman and Egerton help to elevate the film. What we get then is a film with heart and a good moral but lacking originality, falling short of stamping its own mark on a genre full of countless other underdog sport films.