‘Backwards’ Movie Review
After the London Summer Olympics, it seems that the subject of Backwards is very timely and could appeal to quite a few people, myself included.
As the movie opens, we meet Abi Brooks (Sarah Megan Thomas), a woman nearing her 30th birthday who has dedicated her life to making it into the Olympics as part of a rowing team. However, when she is passed over and named an alternate for the second time, Abi decides to quit the team and move back home with her mom.
In need of a job, Abi reconnects with an old flame, Geoff (James Van Der Beek), who is now the head of athletics at their old high school, Union High. Abi becomes the new coach for the high school rowers, she takes two talented girls, Hannah (Alexandra Metz) and Susan (Meredith Apfelbaum), who row together in a double for Union under her wings. Abi, still in Olympic mode, pushes the girls too far at first but soon is able to create a bond with the girls that open a whole new world for her and gives her a new taste at life. However, when an unexpected opportunity arises, Abi will have to evaluate what it is she really wants and what makes her happy.
I’ve always been a fan of sport movies (not a fan of sporta though, go figure). I love watching the underdogs rise up and fight to win. I get a kick out of those bonding scene with the coach. And mostly I love all the inspirational cliches. And that’s kind of what I got with Backwards. It wasn’t the best sport movie I’ve seen, but it was certainly enjoyable. Plus it had a bit of romance and that’s always a plus, especially if it involves The Beek! But I digress.
Backwards is not going to appeal to everyone, however if you are in the mood for a sweet, inspiring story, that leaves you feeling happy and hopeful, then Backwards is it. Sarah Megan Thomas, who stars as Abi and also wrote and produced the film, was able to bring her story to life in 2 years and the fact that she herself had been a rower definitely shines through in the film. And while they had to cut some corner to make the film happen, I don’t think it takes away from the heart of the story.
Overall, Backwards is a really enjoyable film that you can enjoy with the entire family and keep you smiling for the rest of the day.
Backwards opens today Los Angeles at Laemmle’s Music Hall 3 in Beverly Hills, CA and at the Cinema Village, NY. It is also available on Video On Demand. You can watch the trailer below.
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