"Draft Day" Review


Let me start off by saying that I love Kevin Costner. I think his best work was "Mr. Brooks" in which he plays a compassionate, yet delusional serial killer. The movie has the added benefit of restoring some (I said some) of your faith in Dane Cook as well.

So, if you have not seen "Draft Day" yet, you are missing nothing special. The writers / producers tried to make the movie that essentially was a football version of "Moneyball." The problem is the movie was not that. It feels essentially like a Jennifer Gardner movie more than a Kevin Costner film. Personally, I hate Jennifer Gardner. I think she has the emotional range of a toothbrush, and only plays roles where we are supposed to constantly feel sorry for her.

And yet, I haven't even gotten into the movie's plot yet. Where to start? Kevin Costner and Jennifer Gardner finding out they are having a baby on the day of the draft is - to say the least - convenient and extremely "forced." Oh, add on top of that Kevin Costner, who is the GM of the Cleveland Browns, fired his own father a few years ago. Oh, it just so happened his dad died two weeks ago. From a writing stand point, it just convolutes everything. From an acting standpoint, Costner has to play an emotional wreck who has way too many emotions, and really can’t deliver. Yet, this entire story arch is secondary to what we all actually went to the movie for - the NFL Draft! We wanted to see the draft process. Instead, we got to see how the third stupidest draft room in the NFL operates.

The first driving plot line is Kevin Costner's fear that he will be fired. This forces him to trade up from Pick #7 to pick #1. Costner does this so he can select the once-in-a-generation, can't miss QB. The cost of the trade is this year's number one and two additional first round picks. Umm . . . what? No GM is making that trade after seeing how bad the RGIII the trade ended up for Washington.

Whatever, we are only 15 minutes into the movie, and if this is an essential plot point to get us to where we need to go, then so be it. After making the trade, everyone internally at the Cleveland organization apparently needs to subsequently re-assess if said Consensus Number One QB is actually a good prospect. Seriously, I am expected to believe that on the day of the draft’s first round you don't know if the Consensus Top Pick is a guy that you want on your team? Then, why would a GM ever make that trade - especially at the cost required.

Whatever, we still have more of a movie to offend people's reason with. The plot then cycles to the surprise that Costner is actually taking the guy he has loved the entire draft process: Jackie Robinson / Vontae Mack (actor Chadwick Boseman). Costner does this despite the fact that the movie has said multiple times Robinson / Mack / Boseman was available at Cleveland's original Pick #7. Yet, this would be fine if this where the movie ends. You would end the movie with the Cleveland’s fan base being pissed, but the GM strides off into the sunset having been fired. You end with Costner’s character having shown the moral fortitude to do what he believes is right regardless of the consequences. That is a good, unpredictable Hollywood ending.

The ending we got was easily more stupid and revolved around the fall-out from not selecting the Consensus Number One QB - Bo Callahan (*cough* Andrew Luck *cough*). Remember, Cleveland has no first round picks for the next two years now. So, why would the first round matter anymore in the movie? Well it matters because Cleveland is going to trade 3 second round picks to get an extra first round pick in this year’s draft! Not just any pick, but the #6 pick. What GM will ever, ever take that trade?

But this is a movie, the deal goes through. Cleveland immediately turns around and sells the #6 pick to the team in the #7 slot (the same team that traded away the #1 Pick). What does Cleveland get in return? The Browns get all of its first round picks that it traded away to get the #1 pick. Also, Cleveland gets a great return man in the trade to boot!

After this trade, Cleveland now has its original Pick #7 as well which it uses to select a RB. Seriously? In an age when "almost" all NFL team sees RBs as replaceable commodities, Cleveland selects a RB? The same Cleveland that likely has a bad taste in its mouth about the Trent Richardson pick is also going to pick another RB in the Top 10 of the draft?

The biggest loop-hole in the entire movie though is actually based on the salary cap. Jennifer Gardner (i.e. the Cap Analyst for the Browns) previously said that the cap would be tight with the #1 overall pick. Well, now there are two picks in the Top 10 that they somehow have to figure out how to pay.

In summary, I would have asked for my money back; however, I paid only $5 for the ticket, so I can’t be too offended. My favorite part of the movie was this line of reasoning I came upon when reflecting on how bad the movie was, "If Costner's character is correct about Callahan (Consensus Number One Player) being a bust, John Gruden's early spot in the movie calling Callahan 'the best QB prospect since Luck' makes Gruden look like an idiot, which affirms my previous annoyance with Gruden."

Rotten Tomatoes says it is a 63%. I honestly can’t figure out who is actually likes this movie that much.

So what were your thoughts on the movie? Favorite part?

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Stampede Blue's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Stampede Blue's writers or editors.

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