Filmhounds Magazine

All things film – In print and online

Air (Film Review)

2 min read

We all know is as competent of a director as he is an actor; Argo and The Town are two of the best films of the 2010s. But there certainly was a lot of head-scratching when it was announced he would be directing a film about the origins of the Jordan Air shoe range. However, Air is definitely one of the best films of his career and one certainly worthy of your time.

Set in 1984, Air follows the story of shoe salesman Sonny Vaccaro (Ford v Ferrari, We Bought a Zoo) and how he led in its pursuit of the greatest athlete in history,

On paper, it seems hard to drag the story about a shoe salesman out for two hours yet Affleck pulls it off and makes it look easy. The screenplay from Alex Convery is incredibly tight and makes the film thoroughly entertaining from beginning to end. The film is anchored by lots of 80s nostalgia that will certainly appeal to older audiences (the music, fashion, pop culture, etc) but also manages to hook you in with a story that is legitimately interesting. There really is lots to love here (basketball fan or not) as it tells a story that will move everyone as it certainly is a crowd-pleaser.

The cast are all on top-form; Matt Damon certainly has the most to work with as he is the lead but everyone has a moment or two to shine. Ben Affleck is great as Phil Knight, the CEO of Nike, where he has many moments to show a conflicted character unsure whether to run with Sonny's ambitious idea or play it safe for the company. Jason Bateman also has several moments in the film where he gets to stand out and get time in the spotlight which also helps progress the story along in a fitting way. The rest of the cast, involving: Marlon Wayans, Chris Messina, Viola Davis, Chris Messina, Chris Tucker, Julius Tennon and Matthew Maher, also all have some great moments and add a nice energy to the film which works incredibly effectively. 

While the film is telling this story of Nike acquiring Michael Jordan, the best moments of the film are the ones where the characters get to sit back and feel human. There are several moments between Damon and Bateman that feel incredibly human and touching which helps make the characters feel more well-rounded and make the story feel more personal. 

Air is no doubt one of the best films of the year so far and easily the biggest surpise. The cast are all excellent and Affleck is clearly having a blast directing and starring in this with clear passion leaping off the screen. It is highly entertaining and the tight script helps make the films runtime fly by. If you are a sports fan or not, this is definitely one to watch!

Air is in cinemas now.