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  • Writer's pictureStephen Yanni

The Boys in the Boat (2023) - From Depression to Triumph: An Uplifting Row

Rating: ★★★★1/5 (4.5/5 stars)

Released 12-25-2023

Watched 12-30-2023

Reviewed 01-01-2023

Viewed in Theater - Using Cinemark Movie Club



"You’re all here because we’re looking for the eight most qualified young men to fill our JV boat. That means that most of you will not be chosen."


"The Boys in the Boat," a cinematic adaptation of Daniel James Brown’s bestselling book, is a stirring portrayal of resilience and triumph amidst adversity. Set against the bleak canvas of the Great Depression, the film follows the journey of the University of Washington rowing team as they navigate the choppy waters of personal and collective challenges en route to the 1936 Olympics in Berlin.


The narrative is grounded in the experiences of Joe Rantz, played with a compelling mix of vulnerability and determination by Callum Turner. His portrayal of Rantz brings to life not just an athlete’s struggle but also a heartwarming love story that adds depth to the film. The movie’s adherence to historical accuracy, including the depiction of Hitler watching the race, lends it an air of authenticity that enhances the viewing experience.


Admittedly, the film starts at a measured pace, which might test the patience of some viewers. However, this slow burn effectively sets the stage for the emotional and exhilarating climax. The meticulous buildup accentuates the team’s transformation from underdogs to champions, making their victory not just a sporting triumph but a symbol of hope and defiance against the Nazis.


What sets this film apart is its ability to intertwine the personal stories of the rowers with the larger historical context, creating a rich tapestry of emotions. It's more than just a sports movie; it’s a historical piece that captures a pivotal moment in time, offering a unique perspective on a well-known historical event.


Overall, "The Boys in the Boat" is a must-watch for anyone who enjoys history, sports, or an inspiring true story. It's a testament to the human spirit's ability to overcome all odds, making it a truly feel-good film that will leave you uplifted and inspired.

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