80 For Brady (2023) Review

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80 for brady 2023 review 23020502
80 For Brady (2023)

American football has always brought about incredible stories, whether through real-life stories or fiction. The names of great films are an exhaustive list—from Remember the Titans, We Are Marshall, The Longest Yard to The Blind Side. Many of these stories were told about great teams, players, coaches, and their family relations. 80 For Brady added to the genre by showing how much the sport has impacted the fans of the historic game. Get your “strap-on” ready for this unique, wild adventure!

The premise of 80 For Brady was as simple as its catchy name. It followed four older female friends who were long-time New England Patriots fans who have a fun, heartfelt journey to Houston. The adventure was to get to see their hero, Tom Brady play in Super Bowl LI in 2017—one of the closest matches for Brady, and was supposed to be the last year Brady played for the Patriots. Of course, he ended up playing one more season with the Patriots before heading down south with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

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The film was inspired by real-time Patriots fans who were a part of the real “Over 80 for Brady” club. It was one of the member’s grandsons that helped pitch the idea for the movie. Originally, Brady was supposed to retire from his long football career in February 2022 to focus on producing the film. However, we know that Brady did not announce his retirement until a year later, most recently on February 1—at the age of 45.

80 For Brady was a cute, nonsensical ride that attempted to connect its Patriots fans as audience members. The fact that the film was based on the real Super Bowl LI, I already knew the outcome of that match. Yet, it still did not take away from the experience of seeing the on-screen women’s hype to see Brady play. It was similar to how some audience members who saw the Boston Celtics NBA Finals match in real-life knew the outcome of the basketball game in Uncut Gems—except the circumstances that happen to Adam Sandler’s character.

The main stars of the female-led ensemble included Jane Fonda (Grace & Frankie), Sally Field (Spoiler Alert), Lily Tomlin (Grace & Frankie), and Rita Moreno (West Side Story). Pretty much all of them played similar characters to what they have portrayed before in other roles. This was both to the detriment of the film, but also its strength.

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Tomlin and Fonda’s chemistry from their Netflix show, Grace & Frankie, continued to shine in this rollercoaster ride flick. I really felt like Tomlin’s performance stood out from the rest, and I found the plot points written around her character really coalesced with her. The other women also had their individual plots that were both funny yet endearing as well—definitely attuned to the actresses’ strengths in their performances.

80 For Brady was not just a dumb, fun movie with old women doing wacky things…”

While age was a major factor in the film, I thought the messaging of the other themes rang through for any generation. I found some of the jokes corny and cheesy, but the out-of-pocket comments some of the women said were hilariously timed in various quick moments. With a tight runtime of an hour and 38 minutes, I did feel some of the nonsensical moments and story beats to be a bit sluggish. The start of the journey to the Super Bowl did take a bit of time to get into, but the circumstances were outrageous enough to keep me entertained.

However, I also thought it was intentional to slow down the chaos of their adventures of twists and turns. Oh boy, I did not expect there to be as many twists or surprising moments throughout the movie. They were not original plot twists, but they definitely added to the emotions and gravitas of the film. Despite some of the crazy coincidences and mishaps these four women endured, the shifts from funny to dramatic scenes were fairly balanced and connected with me. I thought even non-sports fans could find some resonance or relatability to this type of story.

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Overall, 80 For Brady was not just a dumb, fun movie with old women doing wacky things with the football elements as a backdrop. No, this was an NFL experience that was also a satirical nod to the fandom of football, and sports in general—along with optimistic, humanistic stories that transcend generations. I laughed and felt a newfound sympathy and respect for sports fans who may not always be recognized in the most positive outlook. But it is these long-time die-hard fans that keep me interested in watching these sports grow and evolve.

Final Thoughts

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