June 15, 2010

Jerry Maguire - 1996

Director: Cameron Crowe
Writer: Cameron Crowe
Starring: Tom Cruise, Renee Zellweger, Cuba Gooding Jr.

"I will not rest until I have you holding a Coke, wearing your own shoe, playing a Sega game featuring you, while singing your own song in a new commercial, starring you, broadcast during the Superbowl, in a game that you are winning, and I will not sleep until that happens." After his latest foray into film was twisted into that mainstay of 1990s pop culture we now know as Friends, Cameron Crowe released this film, detailing the life of a sports agent (Cruise) who is cut loose after writing a mission statement partially condemning what he does for a living. Maguire then focuses his entire career on the sole athlete (Gooding) he was able to keep in his clientele, and gets to know the only employee (Zellweger) from his firm brave enough to follow him on his new quest.

I was expecting to see a movie that was basically Tom Cruise: Super Sports Agent. What I ended up with was (the probably far more entertaining) Watch Tom Cruise Struggle as the Universe Repeatedly Takes a Dump on His Life. This film, along with Say Anything... and Almost Famous, completes the trifecta establishing Crowe as one of the great writer/directors of the business. The man got me to love a movie about sports and romance, two things I've never much cared to see on the silver screen. On top of that, it's probably a close second of the few great performances by Cruise (his role as a motivational speaking in Magnolia edges it out), and Zellweger and Gooding also hold more than their own share. And who could forget the adorable little Jonathan Lipnicki playing Ray? It's a shame he's disappeared off the face of the earth. I won't say this film "had me at hello," but I went into it with high hopes and was far from disappointed.

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