"Draft Day"

When this movie came out it didn’t make me want to see it. The trailers and marketing didn’t quite do it any favors. It looked like a weaker Jerry McGuire. I heard and seen interviews that described the movie in different ways. Was it a romantic comedy? Some big deep nonsense guised by football antics? How much football stuff is actually in it? I like football movies. I stand by the fact that “Any Given Sunday” is one of the most underrated movies in a long time. I don’t know why, but I just didn’t have any desire to see “Draft Day”. Then I did. It stars Kevin Costner as the GM for the Cleveland Browns. His job is in jeopardy, his team doesn’t seem to care for him, his legendary coach of a father died a week before, and oh yeah… he somehow has to figure out what to do with the first pick in the NFL Draft. It’s one long day of a lot of characters, motives and passions. That’s the main thing here. Everyone is passionate about what they’re doing except the one guy who turns out to be the “heel” of the movie. If you’ve ever seen the older TV show “Sports Night” then you’ll get the smart-talk-sports-love tone this movie carries. I loved that show so the tone works for me. It’s a good movie. There I said it. I owe an apology to Mr. Ivan Reitman. I should have seen your movie earlier sir. I misjudged it. The movie is well paced, the writing is sharp and in the end it’s hard to walk away from this movie without feeling like you just saw something special. It might sound a little crazy to say, but I’d even go as far as saying this movie has more heart and is more likable long term than “Moneyball”. Granted this movie is fiction and has more artistic freedom than a “based on a true story” type of movie, but it’s still worth noting because no one else seems to notice this. Costner rocks the sports dramedy again, the writing is good, the direction and visual style is great and the supporting cast is stocked with talent like Jennifer Garner, Sam Elliot, Terry Crews, Denis Leary, Ellen Burstyn, etc. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not my favorite movie or anything, but I’d watch it again and I’d encourage others to do so. If you like the business of sports, football, Kevin Costner, or movies about people who are passionate about what they’re doing then this is a movie you should see. B+

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