Monday, April 5, 2010

The Blind Side. B

If I remember correctly, the trailer for 'The Blind Side' gave no indication that this was the story of Michael Oher, who went on to play in the NFL. I thought it was just some stupid inspiring true story about a Christian family giving a poor man a home. I thought to myself, 'So the moral of this story is that you see a big black man walking on the side of the road you should pick him up and take him home.' But I became interested when I learned that that black man was Michael Oher, who was recently drafted by the Baltimore Ravens. I don't generally care for true story sports dramas, but director John Lee Hancock, who also did 'The Rookie' (a movie I liked a lot) knows how to do it in such a way that we don't feel like we're watching one major cliché after another. With 'The Blind Side' he steers clear of anticipation of the 'the big game' (he actually avoids it altogether) and focuses more on family. The film is almost as much about the tenacious Leigh Anne Tuohy (she's the mother responsible for picking up Oher when he didn't have a home) as it is about Oher. 'The Blind Side' was a success in my mind, especially considering how disdainfully I held it when I first heard about it. It doesn't really explore the characters' inner-selves until the very end, but it has intelligence, humor, and solid drama that never becomes too trite. I really enjoyed Sandra Bullock, who sports a fancy blond wig and a convincing southern accent, but I didn't ever believe her performance was worthy of the Oscar she received for it. It was solid work, but it wasn't challenging enough and I think any competent actress could have done it. This film is predictable of course, but if it takes being predictable for a movie as entertaining as this one, then I'm all for it. It's an easy two hours to sit through, and leaves you feeling good. I can definitely see why America fell in love with 'The Blind Side.'

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