Taron Egerton trades in his Kingsman style for a much more light-hearted approach as Eddie Edwards in Dexter Fletcher’s biographical feature Eddie the Eagle.
Ever since he was a young child, Eddie Edwards (Taron Egerton) has had aspirations to one day compete in the Olympic Games as a ski jumper. One day while practicing his ski jumping, he comes across a man named Bronson Peary (Hugh Jackman), who used to be a ski jumping champion years prior. Now, with a mentor at his side, Eddie trains as much as he can in order to compete in the 1988 Winter Olympics.
A large majority of this film has a 1980’s style feel to it, which was great. Some films that are set in the 80’s have a hard time convincing audiences about the time period it is set in. Sometimes there are errors that appear in film where perhaps an appliance is seen in the background that did not yet exist at the time of the film’s setting, but with Eddie the Eagle everything looks and feels 1980’s which is excellent.
Egerton does a remarkable job here as Edwards. Not only does he look a lot like him, but he is extremely charismatic and likeable as well. We occasionally see him when he was only ten years old telling his mother that he wants to be an Olympic athlete one day. Some bullies do show up along the way, which makes Edwards a character you can feel genuine sympathy for.
Also great here is Jackman as Edwards’ mentor Peary. He is an extremely likeable presence and often creates some humorous moments. Throughout the film, we see Peary teach Edwards the various techniques that he incorporated when he was a ski jumper, and it can be inspiring and heart-warming to see Edwards transform into a confident man who believes he has what it takes to win the Olympics. Another great thing about Edwards in the film is that he does not even necessarily care if he wins – he just simply wants to participate in the games.
One thing that was slightly annoying about Eddie the Eagle however is its choice of music. Every couple of times we transition from one scene to the next, we hear the same exact song being used and it can get old extremely fast. It definitely would have been nice to see just a little bit more in terms of the film’s music.
Additionally, there are a couple of scenes in this picture where it is quite obvious that a stunt double was being used for the scenes where Edwards practices his ski jumping which was distracting. Furthermore, during some of the ski jumping scenes, there is a lot of shaky camera movements which made it rather difficult to see what was going on.
Taron Egerton gives a remarkable performance in Eddie the Eagle, a heart-warming feature with an inspiring story.
Overall Grade: B+
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some suggestive material, partial nudity and smoking
Cast: Taron Egerton, Hugh Jackman, Christopher Walken, Iris Berben
Directed by: Dexter Fletcher
Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
Running Time: 106 minutes