Not enough meat on the bone here...


Follows the history of shoe salesman Sonny Vaccaro and how he led Nike in its pursuit of the greatest athlete in the history of basketball, Michael Jordan.


DAMON- Folks, we are going to have to come to a point where we start acknowledging Matt Damon in a certain type of way. He’s been around long enough, and he’s been so good so often that referring to him as a legend shouldn’t seem ridiculous or over the top in any way. This isn’t anywhere close to being one of his best performances; I’ll admit that. But what he does here is truly his specialty. He makes a lot out of a little.

He has the ability to look right down the camera and deliver a cheesy monologue and make it sound like the Gettysburg Address. There are a number of times in this movie where he does just that, and you come to realize that that’s the signature that is made audiences trust him for the last 25 years.

AFFLECK (THE DIRECTOR)- Been saying it for a long time now, Ben Affleck is the most underrated director in the entirety of hoHollywoodIf you come to think of the variety of genres that have not only been executed well but have a certain kind of signature flare that he has directed… Well, it’s pretty impressive. This is a film that, at its core, is very minimalistic for better or worse and would look like total amateur hour if not for a seasoned director.

There is a sequence where they create the shoe model and come up with the name. The movie does such a good job of building up the mythos of Michael Jordan up to this point that when the name “Air Jordan” is set out loud does have a feeling of relevance that would seem totally silly under a less skilled person behind the camera.

Directing-wise, Ben Affleck has been the real deal; if you don’t know that by now, shame on you.


TOO MUCH BUSINESS- This is a film that falls into the category of workplace drama/comedy. Still, because 90% of the film takes place within an office-type setting, the direct comparisons are films like MONEYBALL, 9 TO 5, OFFICE SPACE, or even films like a cabin in the woods, she said, or spotlight. (Stylistically speaking, of course) In my humble opinion, I do believe that office-set workplace films usually have a lot more heavy-set consequences when it comes to what the workers are trying to achieve.

There’s a lot said about what happens if the people in this film do not achieve their mission. Still, we don’t get to know their characters well enough whatsoever to fully get a chance to invest in the risk that they themselves are taking or the real-world impact of what happens if they succeed. There are no backstories really for anyone that aren’t spoken directly to each other in a practically unnatural fashion.

Movies that are designed to be dramas in this department usually go into the 2 hours and 20-minute area of running time. AIR does what it does with what it has, but there needed to be more of what was presented.


JORDANS ABSENCE- It is not spoilery in any way to tell you that Michael Jordan isn’t necessarily featured in this film as an actual character. At first, I respected that decision. But after seeing both this film and the masterful 20/20 sports documentary about him called The last dance, this decision is an absolutely ludicrous one. He is presented as nothing less than a godly figure in this film, and the idea that he would be mostly silent when it came to what would be the biggest business deal in the history of professional sports when ultimately it was his decision…is borderline lunacy.

It would have been nice to see at least some of the internal conflicts that he may have had from all of these business people tugging at his cape a, all the while dealing with the fame that could come from this business venture becoming successful… But alas, maybe in another film.


I’ll go ahead and put this film in that category of movies that would have served better as a limited series or television show. There was so much more to explore here, so much more to say about the company of Nike, the mystique of Jordan, the importance of his parents in relationship to him, and ultimately how athletes were kind of puppeteered by major corporations back in the day. So much to cover. So many opportunities to do so. Not enough time.

On the flip side to that, I am hoping for the success of this thing. Star vehicles seem to be readily ignored by studios over and over again. If this film can prove to be profitable, maybe we’ll see better movies like it being given theatrical opportunities in the future.

Star vehicles are sorely needed these days.  

AIR is in theaters now

Eli Brumfield

Eli Brumfield in an actor/screenwriter from Seattle Washington, living in Los Angeles.

He is the host of the RV8 Podcast.

He hates the word cinefile, but considering how many films he consumes in a week...and how many films he goes out of his way to see, no matter the genre...he kinda seems to be one.

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