Review: The Boys in the Boat

Official synopsis: 
1930s-set story centered on the University of Washington's rowing team, from their Depression-era beginnings to winning gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

I don't dislike George Clooney as a director. In fact, he's quite competent behind the lens. I'm just wholly uninterested in the majority of the stories he brings to the screen. His newest offering, a feel-good story about underdogs is just about as generic and formulaic as you think it is.

Since the film is set during the depression, it's filtered with warm tones and makes the cinematography dull. None of the actors are particularly memorable, (Joel Edgerton is innocent) though Luke Slattery comes close, but he's not the focus. And because this was about rowing, I couldn't help but think of a much better film I saw about rowing earlier this year in The Novice.

Whenever I watch an underdog sports movie, I think of 2004's Miracle. A film that had no business being as entertaining as it was. Like The Boys in the Boat, you know where the film goes, but the film is so engaging it makes you on edge. Like history might rewrite itself in front of you and they don't make it. There's none of that here. The single most amazing thing about this movie is that I actually finished it.

Grade: D


  1. Ouch! Who knows...this may be big atvthe box office because people need this type of film. It does sound as exciting as watching dirt

    1. Maybe, but Nyad is on Netflix and is a better sports film that came out this year, so they have that option too.

  2. I do like George Clooney as a person and as a businessman while I think he's an alright filmmaker. I'm not really interested in this story though I do give him credit for at least wanting to tell stories through he money he's made from his whiskey business. At least he's not schilling lame products like Ryan Reynolds and the Crock.


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