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Dexter Fletcher
Taron Egerton, Hugh Jackman, Christopher Walken
Writing Credits:
Sean Macaulay and Simon Kelton

The story of Eddie Edwards, the notoriously tenacious British underdog ski jumper who charmed the world at the 1988 Winter Olympics.

Box Office:
$23 Million.
Opening Weekend
$6,084,682 on 2,042 Screens.
Domestic Gross

Rated PG-13.

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English DTS-HD MA 7.1
English Descriptive Audio 5.1
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
French DTS 5.1
Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
Thai Dolby Digital 5.1
Arabic Dolby Digital 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 105 min.
Price: $39.99
Release Date: 6/14/2016
• “Let the Games Begin” Featurettes
• Gallery
• Trailer and Previews


Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.


Eddie the Eagle [Blu-Ray] (2016)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (June 15, 2016)

Nearly 30 years after the 1988 Winter Olympics, those games may remain best-remained for competitors who fizzled, not those who won. The Calgary Olympics gave us two now-famous participants who never sniffed medals: the Jamaican bobsled team and British ski-jumper Michael “Eddie the Eagle” Edwards.

1993’s Cool Runnings offered a loose take on the bobsledders, and 2016’s Eddie the Eagle provides a look at Edwards. As a child, young Eddie (Tom Costello) decides he wants to grow up to become an Olympian. A harsh realist, his father Terry (Keith Allen) discourages this notion, but his mother Janette (Jo Hartley) backs him 100 percent and allows the fantasy to flourish.

As he becomes an adult (Taron Egerton), Eddie continues to pursue his goal. After he shifts from skiing to ski-jumping, Eddie eventually receives training from coach Bronson Peary (Hugh Jackman) and works his way toward a shot at the 1988 Olympics.

I admit I have an allergy toward most “inspirational tales”, and on the surface, Eagle smacks of the schmaltziest schmaltz one can imagine. Whereas Cool Runnings opted largely for broad comedy, everything about Eagle screamed that it would take a sappy, gooey approach.

Almost everything, that is – I found some hope that Eagle would turn into something watchable based on those involved. Actor Egerton and co-producer Matthew Vaughn paired for 2015’s Kingsman: The Secret Service, a terrific action flick that suffered from zero sentimentality. Two people involved in such an edgy effort couldn’t make a total sap-fest, could they?

Yeah, they could, as Eagle embraces every cliché one can imagine, and it does so with a lack of irony. Every once in a while, I sense a hint of genre mockery – a sense that Eagle mildly wants to lampoon inspirational tales – but those moments pass quickly.

Instead, Eagle buys into the clichés full force and never rises above them. It feels like something written by committee, as it comes with no originality or desire to strike out new territory for itself.

Edwards seems like an odd subject for an inspirational tale anyway. Sure, he did persevere to make the Olympics, but he essentially did so through loopholes - loopholes that the authorities closed to make sure additional not-very-qualified athletes couldn’t follow his example.

Edwards also achieved no actual success in the Games. A totally fictional version of this story would end with Eddie’s victory against long odds and a gold medal around his next. Given Eagle’s need to adhere to some facts, though, this can’t happen, so we’re left with a protagonist who ends up in last place.

I get that Eagle wants to show us that there’s honor in competing, no matter how one does, and I respect that. It just doesn’t make for especially good drama, though. No matter how hard it tries to amp up the finale, Eagle comes with an awfully anti-climatic conclusion, the cinematic equivalent of a kid who gets a “participation trophy”.

Perhaps if Eagle did something interesting with the characters, it might have been more satisfying. Unfortunately, neither Eddie nor Bronson ever blossom into anything more than basic traits. Eddie’s our plucky hero, and Bronson is the disillusioned guy who learns to believe again. Yawn.

I do like the way that the film conveys the risks involved with ski-jumping. As viewed on TV, these endeavors look effortless, so the movie’s attempts to put us in the jumpers’ skis work.

Other than a few thrilling jump scenes, Eagle doesn’t offer much. It turns into a sporadically watchable affair but not one that involves the viewer.

The Blu-ray Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B/ Bonus C-

Eddie the Eagle appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.39:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. The movie came with a positive presentation.

Sharpness was solid. Only a smidgen of softness ever occurred, so the majority of the flick offered strong delineation. No issues with jaggies or shimmering occurred, and the presentation lacked edge haloes. In terms of source defects, I witnessed no specks, marks or other issues; the Blu-ray gave us a clean transfer.

In terms of palette, Eagle went with Hollywood Standard teal and orange – with a heavier emphasis on orange. That seemed like a cliché choice, but I couldn’t complain about the execution of the tones, as they seemed fine. Blacks appeared dark and dense, while shadows showed decent clarity. No notable issues occurred here, so we got a quality presentation.

As for the film’s DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack, it remained suitable for the story. Much of the movie concentrated on general atmosphere, but music used the various channels well, and the soundfield brought ski-jumping scenes to life. Though the soundscape didn’t excel, it added occasional pep to the proceedings.

Audio quality seemed good. Speech appeared natural and concise, as the lines always remained intelligible. Music seemed full and rich, while effects showed good accuracy. Nothing here stood out as particularly memorable, but the track was fine for a film of this sort.

Only a few extras fill out the disc, and we find a collection of featurettes called Let the Games Begin. In total, these three segments run a total of 46 minutes, 43 seconds and provide comments from director Dexter Fletcher, composer Matthew Margeson, producers David Reid and Matthew Vaughn, former ski jumper Michael “Eddie” Edwards, 2nd unit director Vic Armstrong, hair and makeup designer Nadia Stacey, and actors Hugh Jackman, Taron Egerton, Jack Costello, and Iris Berben.

Across these, we hear about the movie’s development and story/characters, cast and performances, music, hair and costumes, sets and locations, and stunts/ski-jump sequences. The sequences offer a decent look at the film’s creation. Though the featurettes walk the puffy side of the street, they still cover the movie in a competent manner.

A Gallery offers 68 stills. These give us movie shots and images from the set. Nothing special occurs, but it’s a decent compilation.

The disc opens with ads for Joy and The Revenant. Sneak Peek adds promos for A Royal Night Out, Brooklyn and Kingsman: The Secret Service. We also find the trailer for Eagle.

A second disc provides a DVD copy of Eagle. It includes the same extras as the Blu-ray.

While mildly watchable, Eddie the Eagle never becomes an especially invigorating inspirational movie. It touches on all the genre clichés without any real attempt to add life. The Blu-ray boasts very good picture and audio along with minor supplements. Eagle brings us a mediocre “feel good” flick.

Viewer Film Ratings: 3.5 Stars Number of Votes: 2
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