Eddie the Eagle
by Tony Medley
Runtime 105 minutes.
OK for children.
Unathletic Michael “Eddie” Edwards (Taron Egerton) was a British youth
who dreamed all his life of being an Olympics star. His middle class
parents tolerated him. His mother encouraged him but his father
discouraged him. He couldn’t qualify for anything but when he discovered
that there was an event in the winter Olympics called ski jumping and
that Britain never entered it, he decided that was his ticket to the
Olympics and became, overnight and in name only, a ski jumper.
his unlikely story. If you saw Taron Egerton in Kingsman: The Secret
Service (2014), you won’t recognize him here. Adopting the real
Eddie’s underbite, he goes from being a fledgling secret agent in
Kingsman to an enthusiastic nerd.
these events took place almost thirty years ago, director Matthew Vaughn
said he was inspired by the feel good 1993 John Candy film, Cool
Runnings, about the Jamaican bobsled team in the 1988 Winter
Olympics that he saw with his children in 2014, and wondered why they
didn’t make films like that anymore and got the desire to make another
film with the same feeling.
scenery and skiing shots are terrific. For insurance reasons, however,
none of the actors were allowed to do any skiing. Some of the shots of
the skiers in the air on their jumps are amazing. This was achieved by
having two jumpers go at the same time, with one sometimes preceding the
skier being filmed with his go pro camera on backwards and sometimes
following him down the ski jump.
attended my screening and said when he was invited to the first
screening of the film he was seated next to the real Eddie, and he was
extremely nervous, concerned how Eddie would react to his performance.
When the screening ended, he looked at Eddie and he had tears in his
eyes, he was so moved by what he had seen.
Vaughn accomplished what he set out to do, made a film the likes of
which you rarely see any more, and more’s the pity (that you rarely see
them, not that he made it).