80 For Brady – Review

Cert – 12, Run-time – 1 hour 38 minutes, Director – Kyle Marvin

After 16 years of having watched from home, inspired by their love for Tom Brady, four aging best friends (Lily Tomlin, Jane Fonda, Rita Moreno, Sally Field) decide to go to the Super Bowl, and make the most of the experience.

Perhaps one of the biggest reasons 80 For Brady works is because of how much you buy into the central friendship at the heart of it. In fact, it’s not really something you need to buy into, you simply need to observe it for a short while to clearly see that the cast clearly enjoy being with each other and had fun making this film. It adds to the entertainment factor of the ‘inspired by true events’ narrative. Yes, it may deviate a lot from reality but it’s never really something you stop to think about as you simply get caught in the spur-of-the-moment sequences.

After 16 years of having watched from one of their homes best friends Lou (Lily Tomlin), Trish (Jane Fonda), Maura (Rita Moreno) and Betty (Sally Field) all decide to escape for a few days to the Super Bowl, to finally see their favourite player, Tom Brady (himself – also co-producer of the film), in person. Once arriving in Houston, Texas there’s no time to stop, the ensemble finds themselves making the most of the NFL experience and bumping into a number of famous faces along the way.

Yes, things could easily step into eye-roll territory but it helps that the film clearly doesn’t take itself too seriously. It has a sense of fun and allows for the energy and relationship of the cast to speak for itself. The laughs come with ease and there’s something of an unexpected quality to a number of the chuckles and the frequency of them. Again, much of this stems from the infectiously good time the cast are having, alongside the fact that in general the events are kept fairly simplistic without feeling repetitive.

It’s even possible to put aside some of the more dramatic elements – largely one involving a potential return of cancer for Tomlin’s Lou which when the sole focus stands out amongst the tone of the surrounding ideas – as things never truly slip away from the central theme. When simply allowing the characters to have a good time that’s when things are at their best. When creating good humour through their personalities and how they interact differently with the likes of convention attendees and wealthy partygoers, managing to avoid jokes which purely lean into the idea of ‘these people are old’. Another of the things that stops things from feeling tired is the fact that while there are some jokes about aging they’re embraced and a natural part of the characters and their conversations.

In general, thanks to the central friendship of both the cast and characters there’s a lot to like about 80 For Brady. An enjoyably amusing piece of entertainment with enough laughs within the simple scenarios to keep things moving along for most of the run-time. While the final few minutes might feel a bit drawn out with the focus shifting to the American football action there’s still a handful of chuckles to help things move along. It’s a very enjoyable time led by four highly entertaining actors.

80 For Brady has plenty of laughs throughout its run-time, but perhaps its greatest element is the relationship between the central characters who, like the cast, are clearly having a great time.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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