Aneesh Chaganty

Movie #284 Jerry Maguire

In Uncategorized on August 23, 2011 at 2:27 AM

Movie #284 Jerry Maguire

(1996, US, d. Cameron Crowe)

The last film in a generation that made an icon out of Tom Cruise, Jerry Maguire disguises itself to be a film about sports, but in reality is just a coming-of-age story, like most Cameron Crowe films. Tom Cruise plays the title character, a sports agent who one night, discovers something he’s been missing in his day-to-day life of haggling athletes for contracts: love and purpose. So he writes a revolutionary mission statement (not a memo). And while everyone claps for him at the office, the mission statement is just enough to get him fired. So Mr. Maguire must start at the bottom, with only one employee in Dorothy Boyd (played by Renee Zelwegger) and one crazy athlete in Rod Tidwell (Cuba Gooding Jr, in his Oscar winning turn). Mr. Maguire must learn the ropes once again, but first he must rediscover his priorities. With classic Crowe sentimentality at its heart, Jerry Maguire isn’t a mopey film, nor is it a film that seems to ask for emotion. Bolstered by an incredible performance from a young Tom Cruise, it is the type of film that you walk away from feeling a little better as a person. Like most Crowe films, Jerry Maguire is about personal growth, not physical accumulation. It is about the constant hurdles we must face and the spontaneity required to overcome them. Wonderfully written and directed, it is a film that I think deserves to be a classic, but unfortunately will only be remembered by cinephiles in the decades to come.

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