This was on my “to see” list from its debut in theaters. Initially (and ironically, since I’m NOT a football supporter) my family didn’t share my interest. It was then “abandoned” in pursuit of other theater trips. With time, we did see The Blind Side.
The Blind Side (2010) Film Review
Life for the Tuohy family is like living in a picture perfect American dream. The kids, Collins (Lily Collins) and S.J., attend a prestigious school and the family lives in a beautiful home. All from success in the restaurant business. Father, Sean (Tim McGraw) had an impressive athletic career ahead of him before an injury benched him; mother, Leigh Anne (Sandra Bullock) is a no-nonsense sort of woman who is not only a devoted parent and wife but a busy career woman. Meanwhile, son, S.J. (Jae Head) befriends the new kid, “big” Mike (Quiton Aaron), who feels “misplaced” among the student body.
As the family runs across Michael Oher during their school activities, Leigh Anne’s heart reaches out to the troubled teen, a teen without anyone. Eventually, Michael returns home with the Tuohy family where they slowly chip away his barriers. Underneath, they discover his protective instinct and natural athleticism may be the perfect combination for the school football team… and he has found a place in their lives where he belongs.
It’s unusual to see a film where an impression has been formed by the outcome, and then to walk away thinking something different. This is the case for this blockbuster. Praise for The Blind Side was in agreement; most reviews were unified in proclaiming this one as being inspirational and emotional. I don’t want to “ruin” anyone’s acclaim for it by creating a misconception, but really this one does play out differently. What most grabs our attention is the comedy woven into the script; I never expected so much laughter No matter what conclusion you come to in viewing this, what cannot be argued is that it’s a well-made production and it most defiantly does not have heart-pounding excitement driving it, instead it builds to a crescendo that examines the motives behind the characters actions.
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Some of the best examples of this are when Leigh Anne reaches a kind of crossroads wondering about her own motivations. Its in these moments where the script finds its stride and the emotions are their best. It’s in the unassuming scenes of support Collins’ shows Michael in school; or the affect Michael’s honest admissions have on Leigh Anne, rather than the whole scope of the film. Then there’s the marvelous acting. Up for an Oscar for this role, Sandra manages this role with grace. McGraw, Collins and Kathy Bates turn in similarly wonderful performances, and Aaron is spectacular as the quiet Michael (without many lines, the acting job all the harder!). That said, perhaps the real spotlight really belongs to newcomer Jae Head. He is HILARIOUS; he knows how to get his audiences’ attention and keep it for the duration of the film.
From the simple (and affective) opening titles, you somehow just “know” this is going to be well worth the two-hour runtime. (Of course some of that may have had to do with all of the “buzz” surrounding it.) Lest you think otherwise, don’t misunderstand, this is an emotionally satisfying story. Fortunately, it throws in surprises too which is what helps to make it so wonderful. If there was only one movie I could have recommend of all the movies I’d seen in 2010, this likely would have been it.
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CONTENT: Profanity does pop up occasionally [including uses of the n-word]. Michael gets into a tense fistfight when his family is being verbally attacked. A mother tells her son not to get a girl pregnant, using a reference to male anatomy.] Gangs call out disrespectful slurs about a woman. Several instances deal with Michael’s background and the fact that he lived in a neighborhood where gangs and abuse ran rampant. Brief flashbacks show Michael and his siblings removed from their mothers’ custody. There’s other thematic elements. The film is PG-13