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Drama - US

Air (2023)

Duration1h 51m
RatingsUK: 15, USA: R, Spain: 7
Source of storyThe real events which resulted in Michael Jordan signing with Nike.
DirectorBen Affleck
Writers/ScriptAlex Convery, with uncredited changes by Affleck and Damon.
StarringMatt Damon, Jason Bateman, Ben Affleck, Chris Messina, Viola Davis, Chris Tucker, Marlon Wayans,
RatingsIMDb: 7.7/10 by 24k people.  Rotten Tomatoes: 92% by 292 reviewers. Review2view: 7/10.

Summary: It is 1984. The basket ball division of sports shoe maker Nike is on the stones with every prospect of being shut down. In this environment Sonny Vaccaro, the man tasked with signing on new talent in the sport lobbies his bosses to allow him to use the whole financial allocation to sign the 18 year old Michael Jordan who he correctly judges to be the biggest star ever in the sport. Sonny overcomes the reluctance on the part of the company to offer Jordan all of their budget, but in order to succeed in making the young man the offer he goes to see Jordan’s parents and negotiated with his mother. This is against all the rules and invokes the ire of Jordan’s agent, David Falk. Eventually he finds that despite equivalent offers from Adidas, Jordan’s mum says he will sign if he gats a percentage of the sale of every shoe.

Content: There is no sex or nudity, and if there is any drinking or smoking it is hardly noticeable, despite the fact that in1984 both would probably have featured much more strongly in office life. Sonny watches baseball games a lot, mostly using VHS tapes. He meets with his bosses who are generally objecting to his plans and spends a lot of time on the telephone talking to various people, particularly Jordan’s agent David Falk, who swears a lot. Sonny meets with Jordan’s parents and later there are meetings with the heads of the companies involved, Adidas, Converse and Nike. When things begin to go well we see how the Air Jordan is designed.

A View: I went along to this screening just a bit reluctantly, my wife had chosen to see a film about homosexuality in Morocco. However, the opening credits featured the Dire Straits song, Money For Nothing which was so appropriate that I felt well disposed towards it. Matt Damon virtually reprised his role as Carroll Shelby in Le Mans ’66 and possibly in homage there was a model of a Shelby Cobra on his computer monitor. But it is none the worse for that. I have no knowledge of basket ball and have no intention of gaining any, but I still enjoyed the film. Some critics were dismissive of it, saying it was nothing more than an a bloated advert for Nike, but in these days of multiple superhero outings it is good to see a well presented drama. So a worthwhile expenditure of the cost of a cinema ticket.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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