Went with some friends to see this movie on the opening weekend. Actually had to go twice, as the first attempt on Friday evening was sold out – much to my surprise (and here I thought all the hype was New Moon but the theater was full for Blind Side). That all aside, the movie is based on the true life story of Micheal Oher and his adoptive family the Tuohy’s of Memphis, Tennessee. I admit I did not realize that it based on a true story and was initially interested in seeing the film because of Sandra Bullock.
Let me say I am so very glad I let my being a fan of Bullock’s work influence my seeing this film, as it is one of the best I have seen in some time. For those that have not seen it and may want to, let me encourage you do so. The cast is all-star and could not have been assembled any better. Bullock, through interaction with the real Leigh Anne perhaps, seems to really get the character well. Surprising is the kids that got the roles assigned, who came seemingly out of no where and add to that Tim McGraw – who blended in so well as his character a lot of folks I was with did not even realize it was him. Clearly Hancock, the director, got the right idea when he both wrote the script from the book and then directed his vision to the screen.
A quick summary of the film runs something like poor boy from projects with home problems gets a shot at an exclusive private school because of a friend that cares. Things go wrong there though, and while living in gyms and laundry mats, one cold night in the rain he seen by the family. After offering a ride and a warm place for the night it becomes a mutual respect kind of thing and eventually leads to a permanent home. In the meantime he learns a bit about football and becomes one a much sought after recruit. With assistance from the family, he manages to also become academically eligible. The happy ending of the story is he was a first round draft pick to the Baltimore Raven’s and plays on Monday night!
There has been a lot of speculation that the family only pursued a relationship to make themselves feel better or worse yet to prep him to play football at their college, Mississippi State. Reality is, the start of the relationship was really all about seeing a poor kid in a freezing rain and having a bit of compassion. From there it really a story of how an awesome nurture can truly overcome a background of possibly poor nature. It is an amazing story, really and truly.
Now, while I am realistic enough to know that not every, or for that matter, even very many situations are going to end a top of his field situation – the movie is inspiration for anyone considering an adoption or some such. Beyond that though, it should inspire any of us who claim to be of a christian nature to great deeds beyond what others may think.
Anyway – my whole-hearted five stars recommendation and happy thoughts about what else is being offered this fall/winter movie season if this is any indication.
** – picture of the real Michael Oher and the Tuohy’s