‘The Boys in the Boat’ – George Clooney’s Sports Drama Fails to Dip Beyond the Surface | 1 Minute Movie Reviews


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I thought The Boys in the Boat was a passable sports picture. The main issue: it’s overly familiar – firmly in the vein of the awards-friendly sports films of yesteryear.

There are some nice performances here – I thought Joel Edgerton elevated the generic persona he was given. And there’s some serviceable, straightforward direction from George Clooney.

There’s also a nice score from Alexandre Desplat. Although, the music is given too much of the heavy lifting to do, often dictating just how we should be feeling.

It looks like the aim here was to make an easy-going, crowd-friendly movie… and I guess it gets the job done – just. I just didn’t find the film to be all that interesting. And it’s a shame, because I think that the material – this inspiring true story, the period in which it’s set – it could have been mined for so, so much more than this.

The Boys in the Boat is held back by a reliance on trope-moments and an unwillingness to dip beyond the surface. Even the art of rowing is barely explored.