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It's all well and good to stroll through life with a healthy air of
scepticism, but despite some peoples' views on these supposedly
'manipulative' romantic films, there are an elite few that really do have
things to say based on something more noble than ticket sales - things
are actually worth listening to.
Jerry Maguire is one of these rare beasts. No, it's not perfect, and no, it doesn't ring true for every last second of its running time, but if you come away from it with a sneer rather than a genuine desire to take a step back and look at yourself, then there's no romance in your soul at all. It's a genre that's always been particularly susceptible to the flood of lacklustre money-spinners, so to come across something that's had so much visible thought and effort thrown into it from all corners is a revelation. I'm not naive enough to think that anything making it big in the film industry these days can be purely a labour of love, but Jerry Maguire at least comes close.
It's refreshing to see Tom Cruise demonstrate that, against all odds, he can act his heart out when given the right role, as can Cuba Gooding Jr. (neither of them better previously or since) - and the rest of the cast give it every bit as much passion. It's beautifully written, and shot with an easy style that makes me wish there were more directors like Cameron Crowe in this world.
And on top of that, it gets better with each viewing. Even the soundtrack feels as if weeks have been spent fine-tuning it to perfection, and I'm no fan of Springsteen or Tom Petty. Deride it if you like, I'm not saying that Jerry Maguire's totally free of sentiment... I'm just suggesting that it's not necessarily a bad thing to have your heartstrings tugged and your self-awareness questioned once in a while.
By definition, and depending upon who you're talking to, `Success' can be
measured in a number of different ways. It's winning the competition,
celebrating a Golden Wedding Anniversary or, to many, just making the most
money. The first two are absolutes; you win and you make it to number 50.
No gray areas. If you're not dead, you're alive; you're either pregnant or
you're not. But in regards to that third item on the list, what are the
parameters by which you measure that particular success? Are there lines
across which you will not step to make that extra buck? Or do you do
whatever it takes-- including selling your soul and sacrificing your very
identity-- to make as much of the green as you can. Is that success? Or is
that selling out. Can there, in fact, be true success when ethics and
integrity are absent? It's the territory writer/director Cameron Crowe
explores in `Jerry Maguire,' the hit 1996 film that landed him an Oscar
nomination for Best Original Screenplay, a Best Actor nomination for star
Tom Cruise, and captured the award for Best Supporting Actor for Cuba
Jerry Maguire (Cruise) is a high-powered sports agent for a huge agency, handling a portfolio filled with high profile sports figures. And the name of Jerry's game is money; he gets the big bucks for those he represents, he keeps them in the limelight and in the end pulls down some mighty big bucks for himself and the firm. But at what price? Who is Jerry Maguire, really? Has he played the chameleon for so long as a means to an end that even he doesn't know who he is anymore? Does he even consider it? If he stopped to think about it, the answer would be a resounding `No.' But then something happens. One night, he wakes up and happens to look at himself in the mirror, and for whatever reason, it suddenly dawns on him what a selfish, soulless, empty life he is leading. So in the wake of this epiphany, he seizes the moment, sits down at his keyboard and hammers out a `mission/morality statement,' in which he reorganizes his entire approach to his career, including reestablishing parameters and setting new priorities making conscience, ethics and integrity his paramount concerns. And while still riding the high of his nocturnal enlightenment, he goes to his office, makes copies of his statement and distributes it to the mailboxes of everyone from his boss on down. Then he goes home and goes to bed.
In the cold light of morning, however, he realizes what he's done and races to his office to avert disaster. Too late. He enters the room to a hail of praise and appreciation from his peers, but his boss is less enthusiastic. It's no surprise to Jerry, then, when the big `M' his superiors are interested in turns out to be `Money' and not `Morality,' as in `Money talks, Jerry walks.' And just like that he's out the door. But before he leaves, he vows to make it on his own. He's up, he's positive, he has his statement-- and he doesn't have a clue what to do next. What he does know is that the adventure of a lifetime is awaiting. And the world is about to meet the `real' Jerry Maguire.
Cameron Crowe made his debut as a writer/director with `Say Anything' in 1989, in which he first exhibited that keen insight into the human condition that has been one of the trademarks of his success as a filmmaker. In `Jerry Maguire' he demonstrates again that acute sense of knowing what makes people tick, and leaves no doubt that he knows how to convey it to his audience. Crowe's story, as well as the presentation, is original and imaginative, and he fills it with real characters involved in very real situations. And it's the characters that really sell it, because these are three-dimensional people, not just cardboard cut-outs, and moreover, Cameron knows how to get the best out of his actors to really bring them to life.
Tom Cruise was the perfect choice to play Jerry; he has the look, the energy and the talent to get inside this guy's skin and make him tick, and he successfully channels his natural exuberance into his character, tempering his performance just enough to make it really work. An Oscar nomination does not come cheaply, and Cruise certainly deserved the one he received for his work here.
Cuba Gooding Jr.'s performance is deserving of the acclaim he received for it, as well. As Rod Tidwell, the pro football player/client who sticks by Jerry and insists that he `Show me the money!' Gooding equals, if not surpasses Cruise's level of enthusiasm with a vibrant and rich portrayal that makes Rod one of his most memorable characters. Like Cruise, Gooding is perfectly cast and points up, again, what an acute sense Cameron has for who and what will work to bring his story so convincingly to the screen.
Not to be outdone by her co-stars, Renee Zellweger gives an endearing performance as the vulnerable but steadfast, single mom, Dorothy Boyd. She's such a `giving' actor, and she endows Dorothy with a gentle, caring manner that expresses her deepest thoughts and feelings so well. Her reaction, in the scene in which Jerry tells Dorothy-- with his back turned to her-- that he has broken up with his fiancee, Avery (Kelly Preston), is priceless, and alone makes this film worth watching (repeatedly). Her work here is every bit as Oscar worthy as Cruise and Gooding's, and it's hard to understand why she was overlooked, as she is such a vital presence in this film. 9/10.
The supporting cast includes Jerry O'Connell (Frank), Jay Mohr (Bob Sugar), Bonnie Hunt (terrific in her role of Laurel Boyd, Dorothy's sister), Regina King (Marcee) and Jonathan Lipnicki, unforgettable as Dorothy's precocious son, Ray. A triumph for Cameron Crowe, this movie is, indeed, magic.
I just finished watching this movie for the third time and I still love
this movie as much as I did after the first time I watched it. Maybe
even more! As I already said in the title of my review, only Cameron
Crowe can make this kind of movies. Movies about life the way it is and
life the way it should be. What I like the most about Crowe's work, is
that everything is real. The characters, their emotions, the story,
The whole is absolutely amazing.
Tom Cruise gave an excellent performance as the sports agent with a heart. Someone for who money isn't the most important thing. It's all about the relationship between the sports agent and his client. What's so great about "Jerry Maguire", is the fact that the movie isn't about who Jerry Maguire really is, it's about who he wants to be. I loved Cuba Gooding Jr. By far his greatest role ever. Let's not forget Renée Zellweger and her cute son, amazingly performed by the young Jonathan Lipnicki. Both where very good. Perfect casting for Zellweger.
I read in the trivia that the title role was written for Tom Hanks. Don't get me wrong, Tom Hanks is an excellent actor, but to play an ambitious and arrogant sports manager (what Jerry Maguire was at the beginning of the movie), you need to have Tom Cruise's face. He was just perfect for the role. I can't think of anybody who could have done this as good as he did.
So my conclusion for Jerry Maguire: If you haven't seen it, you should definitely see it. If you have seen it, I hope you can agree with me. This movie is wonderful, as where are used from Cameron Crowe-movies.
I've almost always loved Crowe's style of storytelling and never tire
of rewatching 'Almost Famous' and 'Jerry McGuire' (which I consider his
best). Even though his more recent 'Elizabethtown' didn't match up the
standards of those two films, that too had its wonderful moments (and
it was better than 'Vanilla Sky', Crowe shouldn't have attempted
remakes). Like most of his films, 'Jerry McGuire' has soul. Crowe's
eloquent screenplay is rich in humour, drama and lots of energy. It
features some of the finest dialogues and one-liners like 'You had me
at hello', 'Don't cry at the beginning of a date, cry at the end like I
do'... and the actors deliver them marvelously. Another fascinating
aspect is the brilliant characters. Each and every one of them, no
matter how long the screen time, has something that contributes. Thus,
next to an engaging drama and a magnificent comedy it is a fine
'Jerry McGuire' may also be one of Cruise's career best movies. I'm surprised to hear that the part was originally written for Tom Hanks. Hanks is a fine actor but I can't imagine him as McGuire as I doubt whether he has the right combination of energy and pathos that are required to be McGuire. I can't imagine anyone but Tom who fits the part. The same can be said of Renee Zellweger and Cuba Godding Jr as I don't see how a Winona Ryder, Cameron Diaz or Mira Sorvino and a Jamie Foxx (all good actresses) could respectively bring out the sweetness, vulnerability and charisma of Dorothy Boyd or the energy, humour, liveliness, enthusiasm and devotion (towards family) of Rod Tidwell. One wonders why Zellweger was overlooked as her presence too is crucial to the film.
In addition, the film has a splendid supporting cast that include a sublime and laugh-out-loud Bonnie Hunt, a bitchy gorgeous Kelly Preston, a sprightly Regina King and an unforgettably lovable Jonathan Lipnicki (one of the few child actors who's cute but not in the way that gets on your nerves)'. Child actors are very hard to direct but Lipnicki's performance comes across as very natural and he acts like a real child instead of those irritating oh-look-I'm-so-cute child models.
The soundtrack too deserves mention as it features some amazing numbers. One of the so many memorable scenes is when McGuire is driving in his car and he listens to the radio, switching channels and singing along. Then there's also the incredibly romantic 'Secret Garden' by Bruce Springsteen among other great familiar tracks by the Beatles, Rolling Stone, Marvin Gaye, Kurt Cobain etc. On the more technical side, the wild and smooth cinematography, slick editing and effective sound are superbly put together. The visuals are very impressive.
The last time I had watched 'Jerry McGuire' was about 10 years ago and I vividly remember saying 'wow!' when the end credits started to roll that my sibling wondered what the hell was going on. I feel the same about it after having rewatched it recently. Well, actually I like it more because I noticed more things that I overlooked before and understand and like the characters more. McGuire's transformation from the money-obsessed agent to the caring agent and then to the caring human being (in the form of a father and a husband), a change that wouldn't have happened if it weren't for the caring people in his life, is one remarkable story.
I refused to see Jerry Maguire for several years, assuming it was a cheap movie about money, sports and sex. When i finally watched it on TV, i was blown away. This movie is about hope, redemption, love, and finding out the meaning of life. Tom Cruise does a spectacular job playing someone with nothing to loose, and Cuba Gooding's performance brought tears to my eyes. Renee Zellweger fits perfectly by having great chemistry with Jerry, and by having a normal, plain look. This film works because it's so real and easily plausible; its a witty, romantic drama more than a romantic comedy that proves its never too late to start over or take a risk.
This movie is a comedy, drama, romance, sports movie, and a money movie
(e.g. Wall Street, where the main character is trying to make a lot of
money). The problem such a movie faces is maintaining a consistent
tone. Remember Prizzi's Honor? JM solves that problem by using
restraint. It doesn't go over the top, although its characters
sometimes do. It has funny moments, but it's not Animal House or
American Pie. It's a drama, but it keeps the stakes low. This isn't
Armageddon: they aren't trying to save the world. There are no life or
death decisions. The romantic stakes aren't that high either: Renee
Zellweger loves Tom Cruise, but she's been in love before and if this
doesn't work out, she will be again. The only really high stakes are
the money. By keeping the stakes low, JM let's us watch it with a bit
This is more of a drama than a comedy. A good test is whether the characters change. Here, Tom Cruise starts off completely cynical, abruptly changes to ridiculously idealistic, then spends the rest of the movie finding the right balance. Renee Zellweger starts by loving Tom Cruise from afar, then gets him, then has to work out her ambiguous feelings.
JM is fun to watch. The characters, though flawed, are sympathetic. We enjoy watching them succeed, fail (sometimes in funny ways), and try to discover what they really care about. It's complicated, thoughtful, and surprisingly subtle.
"Jerry Maguire" did something very strange in 1996: it had both critical and commercial success. This was evident in the fact that the four other Best Picture nominees for the year were all independent productions. "Jerry Maguire" shows the business world of America at its worst, in this case in the sports industry. When Jerry Maguire, a sports agent, (played by Oscar-nominated Tom Cruise) has a breakthrough one night he realizes that quality is more important than quantity. Of course he is fired from his job and loses all of his clients except Rod Tidwell (played by Cuba Gooding, Jr. in his Oscar-winning performance). Dorothy Boyd (Renee Zellweger) has left the business with Maguire, agreeing with his views. However, Maguire struggles with his separation from the sports corporation (losing his fiance and the first pick in the NFL Draft). However, he survives and learns that living well and loving well are the keys to happiness. All in all, "Jerry Maguire" is classic Hollywood stuff made in the present-day. Cameron Crowe's script and direction are subtle, but extremely effective. Tom Cruise delivered his best performance to date. Renee Zellweger proved to be the find of the year and Cuba Gooding, Jr.'s quotes and scenes he stole were enough to win him the Oscar in a very competitive year in the Best Supporting Actor category. "Jerry Maguire" is not a perfect film. In fact it is flawed in many ways and is not very accurate in some areas. However, its ability to mix comedy, romance, and drama make it a very entertaining film. The performances are all excellent. 4.5 out of 5 stars.
At the 1997 Academy Awards, host Billy Crystal referred to the
characters played by the five Best Actor nominees (of which Tom Cruise
was one) as being "a burned guy, a mentally-challenged guy, a
mentally-abused guy, a paralyzed guy, and an agent. And four out of the
five are treatable." Of course Crystal was jokingly referring to the
Agent as being beyond help. Among the figures of sports and
entertainment, agents are often regarded as the necessary evil of the
industry often with reputations as being the sleaziest of VIP's,
just-above used car salesmen. Their antics which require a high-level
of tough negotiations are sometimes seen as money-gouging and
materialistic. In the film "Jerry Maguire", Tom Cruise decides to wear
the shoes of a sports agent and walk around in them for just over two
"Who am I? What am I doing? Where am I going?" We often think of these questions as being asked by the adolescent. But Jerry Maguire, the savvy sports agent in his mid-30's, ends up asking the same questions. And his answer is inspiring, transcendent, and detrimental. He mistakenly writes down his inspired thoughts and submits them to his colleagues of his sports agency. For his inspiration, he loses his place at his agency and many of his highest-paying clients to his rival Bob Sugar. Subsequently, he also loses his attractive but shallow fiancé. Maguire is forced to try and live his dream of being more caring and receptive towards the needs of his clients rather than just being there to get a slice of his athlete/clients' multi-million-dollar paychecks. And he must do it starting from the ground up with only a single client who agrees to retain Maguire.
So the question asked of the movie is: Can a sports agent find a more meaningful, possibly spiritual, life and still acquire the high-paying clientèle? And maybe even more to the point, can an agent make a difference beyond just being a high-powered money negotiator? "Jerry Maguire" is a thoroughly entertaining riches-to-rags-to-transcendence story of a fantasy sports agent trying to find a deeper purpose to an otherwise materialistic existence.
The film works at almost all levels, particularly because of the dynamism of Tom Cruise and Cuba Gooding Jr. in an Academy Award-winning performance, playing the only client willing to stay with Maguire. Part of the story is Maguire's journey from the purely material to a deeper and more-satisfying existence. Rod Tidwell (Gooding), wide receiver for the Cardinals, is a strange opposite to Cruise but has a similar problem. Tidwell is a devoted father and husband, emotionally involved with his family but does not quite give that same heart on the football field. The story becomes about both characters finding something deeper in their place in the world, Gooding giving what he gives to his family to his team, and Cruise giving to his clients and co-worker/lover Dorothy Boyd his love and attention. Renee Zellweger plays Dorothy Boyd in a passionate and sensitive performance that will definitely bring tears. Zellweger's son becomes an important character and also an inspiration to Cruise to find the deeper and more sensitive part of himself.
In the materialistic world of late 20th-century America, "Jerry Maguire" is a breath of fresh air. A rare story produced by the materialistic studios about the dangers of losing oneself for the sake of materialism. An interesting statistic has emerged of late regarding a high number of American businessmen on their deathbeds who begin regretting the direction and purpose of their lives. "Jerry Maguire" offers an alternative, although probably few in his position would find the wisdom to change course. But since you can't take it with you, life is about what you leave behind.
Tom Cruise had one of his best roles and earned his second Oscar Nomination for Best Actor for his charismatic JERRY MAGUIRE, a richly entertaining comedy drama that is a seamless blend of character study and romantic comedy. Jerry is a driven and ambitious sports agent for an international agency that represents professional athletes in all sports who has a crisis of conscience that motivates him to write a "mission statement", which turns out to be more of a defiant manifesto blasting everything that is wrong in his business. he distributes his "memo" throughout the office and though it gets faint praise initially, it does end up getting him fired from the agency. We then see Jerry try to continue his business though he only has one client who agrees to stick with him. Director-writer Cameron Crowe (FAST TIMES AT RIDGMONT HIGH; ALMOST FAMOUS)solidified his position as a master cinematic storyteller with this epic story told on an intimate scale. His extremely deft screenplay is sharply delivered by a perfect cast. This role seems tailor-made for Cruise and he makes the most of it. Cuba Gooding Jr. won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his star-making performance as Rod Tidwell, Jerry's most loyal client; Renee Zelwegger was the find of the year as Dorothy Boyd, the secretary from the agency who follows Jerry when he's fired and agrees to work for him and eventually falls for him; Bonnie Hunt scores as Dorothy's sister as does Kelly Preston, in one of her best performances as Jerry's shark of an ex-fiancée. Regina King should have received an Oscar nomination for her solid performance as Tidwell's wife, Marcy; Jay Mohr is quite funny as Bob Sugarman, a rival agent who is battling Jerry to represent another football player (Jerry O'Connell)who is being watched over by his protective dad (Beau Bridges). A rare gem from the 1990's that is not only grandly entertaining, but vividly real...there's nothing false or affected here (though some might find Gooding's Tidwell a little over the top), this film is one of those rare treats that is long, but you hardly feel it. A real treat and a must for Cruise fans.
"Jerry Maguire" has to rate as one of the most quotable movies of the
last decade and a half. It's given us the lines "Show me the money",
"Help me, Help you", "You had me at hello" and "You complete me". And
it's that last line, that really describe this movie. It's really about
the growth of an individual. We see Jerry Maguire the character, grow
from just an agent to becoming much more, it's not an easy trip but for
the most part it's an entertaining one.
Jerry Maguire is a top sport agent. He has a decent amount of big names as client and he's engage to a beautiful woman. Then one day while visiting one of his client in the hospital, the client's young son confronted him after he gives the client a shallow encouragement. The confrontation stick in his mind and would even get him to write a "mission statement" for the company. The "mission statement" basically lays out a plan that the agents give their clients more personal attention. Unfortunately his boss doesn't like it.
The movie gives us a look at the world of the sports agents. Who are they that gets a cut of an athlete's earning and do they really deserve it? In the beginning they're just there to negotiate the numbers and get the athletes as much exposure. In the end, Jerry has become more than a guy who makes deal for an athlete. It also gives us a look at some clients they're more demanding than the agents are prepared to handle. But if handled right they will prove to be worth the trouble.
Jerry Maguire is played by Tom Cruise, and he gives one of his best performance. I think it's every bit the equal of Cuba Gooding Jr's. Oscar winning performance. Both men were on top of their game playing off each other. It's sad that his erratic behavior of late has caused harmed to his career because Tom Cruise is a very good actor. So too is Mr. Gooding and Renee Zellwegger, who plays an office worker in Tom Cruise's office and who joined him as he tries to put forth his "mission statement" into practice.
All in all, I think it's a good movie with a very observant script, complimented by great acting.
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