I must admit, I was sceptical about “Air” at first. I mean, who really wants to see a movie about sneakers? But then, I remembered it was directed by Ben Affleck, the man who brought us such cinematic triumphs as “Gigli” and “Reindeer Games.” So, naturally, my expectations were through the roof.
As I settled into my theatre seat, armed with a jumbo popcorn and an even bigger sense of curiosity, I found myself marvelling at how Affleck managed to take a story about a young Michael Jordan and the birth of the Air Jordan empire and turn it into a two-and-a-half-hour-long epic about, well…shoes.
The film opens with a powerful, tear-jerking scene featuring a young Michael Jordan (played by a surprisingly adept CGI infant) dribbling a basketball while wearing a pair of tiny, adorable Air Jordans. I mean, if that doesn’t scream “Oscar-worthy,” I don’t know what does.
Throughout the film, we’re treated to poignant moments of Jordan’s rise to fame, interspersed with riveting scenes of Nike executives sweating bullets as they try to figure out how to market their new line of shoes. And let’s not forget the nail-biting suspense of watching Jordan’s mother (played by Meryl Streep, in a baffling yet strangely compelling casting choice) negotiate endorsement deals with all the intensity of a high-stakes poker game.
The character development is nothing short of awe-inspiring. Who knew that Phil Knight, the founder of Nike, could be so relatable as he wrestles with the weighty decision of whether to invest in a young, unproven athlete? Or that a young Jordan would be so endearing as he navigates the treacherous world of fame and fortune, all while trying to remember where he left his lucky socks?
“Air” is a heartwarming tale that teaches us all a valuable lesson: that behind every great athlete is an even greater shoe. And, of course, Ben Affleck can do no wrong when it comes to directing. So, if you’re looking for a movie that will have you laughing, crying, and contemplating the life-changing power of footwear, look no further than “Air.” It truly is a breath of fresh air in the world of cinema.