Review: Eddie the Eagle, C-
Rated PG-13, 105 minutes
The cheesy but charming new sports movie "Eddie the Eagle" is based on the true story of Eddie "The Eagle" Edwards, the underdog British ski jumper who caused a sensation at the 1988 Olympic Games for his lack of skill but great determination. "Eagle's" uneven storytelling is predictable and choppy, but there may be enough to inspire those with big dreams. With help from a rebellious and charismatic coach (Hugh Jackman), British ski jumper Eddie "The Eagle" Edwards (Taron Egerton of "Kingsman: The Secret Service") trains for the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta. Directed by Dexter Fletcher, "Eddie the Eagle" is both goofy and uplifting, though it struggles in finding an identity, with an awkward mix of a comedically playful tone and seriously competing in the Olympics. The early training scenes crash-and-burn in a tedious way, but the film is peppered with some nice '80s pop tunes and Jackman, who is on hand as eye candy and rugged toughness as Eddie's mentor and coach. The film becomes more energetic once it gets to the '88 Olympics, and "Eagle" really finds better footing once the real competition begins. Egerton is miscast as Eddie (who in real life is a little leaner and actually a decent ski jumper), and the movie's tone is a seemingly mocking one rather than recognizing the value Edwards brought to the sport and to the Olympics, which created stricter rules for competing after his unsuccessful run. It also doesn't help that much of "Eagle" is fictional, with Jackman's character created specifically for the film, and also, don't expect much of Oscar-winner Christopher Walken, who appears only briefly in a couple of scenes. Eddie "The Eagle" Edwards may not have been successful at the Olympics, but he deserves a better treatment than the charming but mostly flimsy, lightweight "Eddie the Eagle."