One of the stories of last year’s NFL Draft was the saga of Michael Oher, the hulking Ole Miss tackle who survived a childhood filled with extreme poverty to graduate from college and be drafted in the first round by the Baltimore Ravens.
His story was chronicled in the book The Blind Side by the writer Michael Lewis, he of Moneyball and Liar’s Poker fame (and one of my favorite writers). It’s a riveting read, and frankly, what we’ve come to expect from a writer with Lewis’ credentials.
It was no surprise that The Blind Side was being turned into a movie, and many around the blogosphere were pretty happy with the news that real coaches like Nick Saban, Lou Holtz, and Ed Orgeron would be playing themselves in the movie. Yet I was skeptical when I saw writer/director/hack John Lee Hancock attached to the movie. Hancock is the visionary director that brought us The Alamo, easily one of the five worst movies that I’ve ever seen in the theater. (Rollerball, Batman and Robin, Summer Catch and Away We Go could slide right into that top-five with it…)
With Hancock writing and directing this movie, even at his commercial best, the ceiling for this movie was The Rookie, which was an altogether fine movie that followed the familiar paint-by-numbers plot to tell the “unlikely hero” story that includes slow-motion action scenes and a Disney score.
As a few bloggers have mentioned, the trailer is out and the results are pretty much in… This movie is going to suck.
It wasn’t as if The Blind Side was as complicated and confusing as the adaptation process of Moneyball, where an A-List director and screenwriter had to create cartoon characters and all sorts of other weird stuff to figure out how to recreate Lewis’ book on the Oakland A’s and their general manager Billy Beane. This was a cut-from-real-life, unlikely story of a kid with an extraordinary skillset being taken in by a family that helps him realize his potential.
Orson Swindle/Spencer Hall has a nice four-part list with problems spotted in the trailer alone, and I’ve got no bone to pick with any of them, though I would argue that Sandra Bullock doesn’t look “hot,” but merely really good for a lady that is 45.
I can only assume that newcomer Quinton Aaron, who was cast to play the hulking Oher, can’t act his way out of a bag, because this preview makes it pretty clear this is Sandra Bullock’s show. And it’s not exactly like Sandra Bullock is an actor’s actor.
We also should have probably seen the writing on the wall when the Hollywood Reporter wrote back in February that Bullock is set to star in a “sports dramedy” that’s being produced by the guy who brought us Marley and Me, and the company that brought us The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants movies.
This movie just fell off of my must see list and now sits firmly on the “will only go see it for free list,” unless the reviews come in very strong.
Filed under: Football, Movies | Tagged: Michael Lewis, Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side