Plot: What’s it about?
I’m not Tom Brady’s biggest fan, but I’ll give credit where its due – the guy is good. Is he the greatest of all-time (we all knew there’s no way to get through this review without using the acronym “G.O.A.T.”)? It’s debatable. He’s got 7, count ’em, 7 Super Bowl rings (6 with the New England Patriots and one with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers) which is a lot. When you have to use your second hand to put all your Super Bowl rings on – I think that says it all. That said, I’ve always found him to be arrogant and pretentious. Then again, I’d say he’s earned that right. Couple that with his looks and, well, it’s easy to roll your eyes when his name is mentioned. Switching gears, the stars of 80 for Brady are nearly as impressive in their own right. We’ve got (as of this writing) three of the four in their 80’s and one (Sally Field) in her mid 70’s. Acting isn’t football, but I highly doubt even Tom Brady will be competitive at that age.
We meet the gang as Lou (Lily Tomlin) is debating about opening a letter from her doctor telling her if her Cancer has returned. Trish (Jane Fonda) is an erotic fiction novelist who tends to fall for any man she dates while Maura (Rita Moreno) is a widow who chooses to live in her late husband’s nursing home room as opposed to her own house. Finally Betty (Sally Field) is a mathematician who prioritizes the needs of her husband (Bob Balaban) over her own. There’s a rather odd tradition that’s performed when the Patriots play to ensure victory. So when they make it to the Super Bowl, the quartet decide to go to “support their team.” An online sports show provides an outlet for this to happen and, wouldn’t you know it, they win. However when they arrive, Betty loses the tickets. They won’t give up and, knowing that Tom Brady wouldn’t either, they need to find a way to get into the stadium to see him play.
Assuming football fans are reading this (and why wouldn’t they?), I will say that this is based on true events and it takes place in 2017 (noted by the “Super Bowl LI” T-shirts). Brady had not yet been traded to the Bucs, so if you’re trying to find a plot hole – look elsewhere (there’s plenty of places to find them). I’m not sure if the allure of this film is to showcase the talents of four screen legends with Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Rita Moreno and Sally Field. They’ve got 12 Oscar nominations and 5 wins between them. Impressive. Or is the appeal to have Tom Brady be in a film that’s not Ted? Who knows – or cares, really? What might have been a fun little movie to watch seems to rely on celebrity cameos and antics that, well, just don’t seem to make a lot of sense. Maybe if the Patriots ever make it back to the Super Bowl, this could become a classic but it won’t be with Tom Brady. Fans of the Patriots might get a kick out of it as they relive their glory days, but if you’re looking for a real football movie there are plenty others to choose from.
Video: How’s it look?
I highly doubt that the target audience really cares about how this looks, but I do. And, for what it’s worth, I was duly impressed. The 1.85:1 AVC HD encode does showcase some pretty impressive visuals. Detail is excellent, which may or may not be a good thing considering all the botox and plastic surgery that the stars have had (yes, Tom Brady has had a facelift). Contrast is strong, black levels are solid – let’s face it…it checks all the boxes. It’s a new to Blu-ray film and looks as such. Let’s move on.
Audio: How’s it sound?
Dolby Atmos. Yes, really. 80 for Brady sports a Dolby Atmos track that, surprisingly, sounds pretty darn good. This helps with the game scenes, crowd noise and so forth. Vocals are strong and centered while atmospheric sounds fill the room with some pretty slim lines of dialogue. It’s certainly not one that’ll resonate after the end credits roll, but it’s nice (and unexpectedly so) to have a track this good on a movie like this. If audio is your thing, the one scores a touchdown.
Supplements: What are the extras?
- The Game Plan: Making 80 For Brady — Get a sneak peek at the making of the hilarious film as the cast dish on their characters and much more!
- The GOATs: Jane, Lily, Rita & Sally — Experience a heartwarming ode to aging, the power of female friendship, and how wisdom surpasses youth.
- The Visiting Team: Meet the Supporting Cast — Get ready for a star-studded supporting cast! Join Sara Gilbert, Billy Porter, Jimmy O. Yang, Harry Hamlin, Guy Fieri, and Patton Oswalt for behind-the-scenes interviews.
- The Largest Comeback in Super Bowl History — Tom Brady and his teammates relive their epic comeback. Hear their stories in this thrilling featurette!
- Extended & Deleted Scenes
- 80 For Brady: Play-By-Play — Join the cast for a hilarious roundtable play-by-play with host Billy Porter.
- Music Video — “Gonna Be You” by Diane Warren.
The Bottom Line
I’ll go on the assumption that the movie knows who its audience is. I don’t envision watching it again anytime soon, but it’s got a few scenes that are a bit heartfelt. Let’s face it, some of these actresses won’t be around in a decade, so I guess it’s nice they made this little flick while they could. As for me, I’m a Chiefs fan, so that should sum it up.