The King of Sports Films prevails again…
It took Kevin Costner’s career a long time to recover from the disaster that was Waterworld but he has had a bit of a renaissance in recent years with solid roles in The Company Men and Man of Steel. Draft Day is a welcome continuation of Costner’s Indian summer and a return to an area he mined so successfully earlier in his career in films such as Field of Dreams and Tin Cup.
Similarly Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman has also hit on hard times in the last decade so it is especially pleasing to see Draft Day be such a watchable movie with Reitman behind the camera.
The reason Costner works so well in this genre is that it is impossible not to root for him which makes the big fairytale endings less eye rollingly predictable and more heart warming and ultimately satisfying.
The Big K has able support along side him with Jennifer Garner giving a strong performance as well as clichéd but enjoyable turns from Dennis Leary and Frank Langella respectively as the team manager and team owner.
It is a testament to Costner’s charisma that the fact I have zero interest in American Football never felt like a handicap as Draft Day is just as much a character study as it is a sports film.
Draft Day is not original, it does feel like a throw back, but sometimes that is all cinema needs to be – a good story, acted well, that leaves a lasting impression.