Film Review – Draft Day (2014)

Draft Day - post

Title – Draft Day (2014)

Director – Ivan Reitman (Ghostbusters)

Cast – Kevin Costner, Jennifer Garner, Chadwick Boseman, Denis Leary, Frank Langella, Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, Ellen Burstyn, Tom Welling

Plot – On the day of the NFL draft under siege GM Sonny Weaver (Costner) is willing to risk it all in a series of risky trades that put him at odds with the coach of the team Coach Penn (Leary) and increases the tension between himself and his co-worker/lover Ali (Garner). Will Sonny come up trumps on Draft Day or will he come to regret his bold moves?

 “How is it that the ultimate prize in the most macho sport invented is a piece of jewellery?”

Review by Eddie on 16/12/2014

A middle of the road sports movie, Draft Day would have been a whole lot better had it been based on a true story not merely a film using real life occurrences as a sounding board for a story that while interesting doesn’t exactly make for that much of an exciting viewing experience once the initial intrigue wears off.

Directed by the once great Ivan Reitman, Draft Day lacks a certain charm that would of transformed its meandering script into something more special, but Reitman himself directs with an air of mediocrity that makes the whole project feel like a TV movie of the week, not a cinematic sports treat like a Friday Night Lights or Remember the Titans. Reitman’s great sense of humour can be found in moments throughout the tale but there few and far between in a film that thinks far too highly of itself.

At Reitman’s disposal is a well-known cast led by the going for a career comeback Kevin Costner who just doesn’t seem to possess the charm that once made him the world’s most bankable movie star. Costner’s Sonny Weaver is a tricky role that to his credit would of taken a genius to really make likeable. Sonny is an arrogant, egotistical and charmless sort of figure when the film needed him to be far more likeable and back-able for the journey he takes and subsequently his team’s staff takes with him on the journey to the Draft countdown. It’s in these frantic moments that the films finds it’s bests scenes, the clock ticking decisions to be made it almost makes you feel like you’re watching Moneyball, a similar type of sports movie in many ways that did what Draft Day wants to do a lot better.

Draft Day does have moments of tension and remains intriguing to a certain degree but the promise it shows early dissipates mainly into a tale that seemingly didn’t know exactly how to play out its scenario to the full effect. With Reitman on workmanlike form, Costner just not able to generate screen charm like he used to and with a story that seems mildly pointless being not totally based on fact, Draft Day is watchable but never memorable thanks to its predictability and daft overall feel, virtually the opposite to a real life draft day then.

2 and a half sticky notes out of 5

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15 responses to “Film Review – Draft Day (2014)

  1. Your review was spot on in my opinion. It almost seemed like there were too many possible routes to take and the film could not figure out which was was best. The potential was wasted…

  2. Good review Eddie. When it pays attention to the draft and how it all works, it’s surprisingly effective and thrilling. Everything else is just straight up poppycock.

  3. Seeing as I’m British and have no real idea about NFL, I actually thought this movie was fairly entertaining. I still struggle to comprehend the whole ‘draft’ system though. Baffles me entirely!

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