Stronger

Date Watched: – 6th December

Director: – David Gordon Green

Genre: – Biography, Drama

Starring: – Jake Gyllenhaal (Jeff Bauman), Tatiana Maslany (Erin Hurley), Miranda Richardson (Patty Bauman) and Carlos Sanz (Carlos)

Review: –

Based on true events during the Boston Marathon Bombing and afterwards for survivor Jeff Bauman.

Jeff works at the a local Costco on the deli counter whilst living with his alcoholic mother, one evening in a bar he sees his ex-girlfriend raising money for the local hospital she works out by running the Boston Marathon, Jeff grabs the jar and goes round all the patrons in the bar collecting more money for her and promises he will be at the finishing line with a big sign. On the day of the marathon Jeff struggles to get to the finishing line but makes it just in time for Erin to start the final straight when the bomb goes off next to where Jeff is standing and blows both of his legs below the knee off and is rushed to hospital.

Jeff wakes up in hospital after having his legs amputated above the knee and tells his brother that he saw the bomber and his Mum then tells the FBI and they then interview him and he describes one of the bombers and becomes a hero. As Jeff leaves hospital he struggles to cope with the loss of his legs and with the fame that he has gained and isn’t helped by his mother who tries to capitalises on his new fame by booking interviews and appearances for him, Erin who is helping Jeff recover and they rekindle their relationship objects to the appearances after during his appearance at the Stanley Cup Final he suffers flashbacks and breaks down in the lift with Erin but Jeff won’t tell his family so when Patty says she has booked him with an interview with Oprah she says that he is suffering from PTSD and both Jeff and Patty start drinking again and start missing Physiotherapy and when Erin arrives home to find Patty drunk and Jeff passed out in the bath tub she snaps and after they finish a Physio session snaps and leaves Jeff and Patty to drive home alone. After a night out with his brothers Erin picks Jeff up and tells him she’s pregnant with his child which causes Jeff to panic and say he can’t be a father and Erin then leaves him in the car and packs her things from the apartment, Jeff crawls out of the car and makes his way to the apartment block crawling where he has another flashback of the bombing.

Later Jeff meets with Carlos who cared for him in the immediate aftermath of the bombing and saved his life by ties his legs to stop blood loss. Carlos explains that by helping Jeff he helped him as he had lost his son in Iraq and attended his funeral on a stretcher as he had tried to commit suicide and his other son unable to cope with his brother’s death and his father attempted suicide did commit suicide so Carlos able to help save Jeff helped him make peace with his son’s death. After meeting with Carlos, Jeff realises that his story and what has happened to him may help inspire and comfort others so starts to change his life around and starts taking rehab serious and leaves Erin a voicemail apologising for his behaviour and his fear of commitment and promises to change.

Jeff then attends a Red Sox Baseball game where he throws the first pitch, afterwards as he meets the crowd he gets told by many people how he has impacted their lives and inspired them. He then arranges to meet Erin at a diner and his Mum drops him off he walks to the diner on his prosthetics for the first time to where Erin is and he tells her he loves her and she replies good and later Erin gives birth with Jeff by her side. The movie then ends with real life video and photos of Jeff.

Once I saw the trailer I was looking forward to this and to be honest I was a little disappointed with the film but to be honest I can’t really fault it, it’s based on a true story it is well thought out and acted but after watching Patriots Day (which is also about the Boston Bombing but based on a different person) I just felt it wasn’t as good as could be and wasn’t as action packed as Patriots Day but in truth it was never going to be.

I think it’s a decent enough film to watch but I can really recommend it except perhaps for the story and the inspiration behind it but there are other films that have the same inspirational stories that are better.

I only rate this 6/10 which may be a bit harsh but that’s just my opinion of it.

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