The Bronze

Aw yeah, the most patriotic time of the year, where we all get our flags out and scream our dominance at flexibility and water sports and ignore the many sports where we never win. That’s right. Olympics time.

Now, The Bronze came out much earlier in the year, but I knew I had to wait until it was appropriate to review it. Right in the smack damn middle-ish of the Olympics, when we have maybe finished getting out gold medals in gymnastics.

And even more exciting is that The Bronze stars Bernadette from The Big Bang Theory, which of course you would only recognize her from. Outside of some cartoon voice work, I have never seen her in anything else. Oh wait, she was Woman Jogger Yelling at Sydney in I Love You, Man, of course!

Bronze
This means that The Bronze is her second most famous role now! Too bad it wasn’t third! –

Hope Annabelle Greggory (Melissa Rauch) gave America a lot of Hope and a lot of Greggory. You see, she went to compete in the Olympics as a teenager, their star gymnast, from Amherst, Ohio. And then she got injured during a routine. But you know what she did? She did her next set anyways on the uneven bars, with a hurt ankle and received enough points to still place third. She was everywhere and everyone loved her.

But that was her only time in the big leagues. Now, twenty years later or so, she is still living with her dad (Gary Cole), still wearing her athletic gear and medal, and doing jack shit with her life. She has rode her fame into free food at a local Sbarro and a special parking spot down town, but other than that, no one cares anymore. And then her old coach (Dale Raoul) commits suicide.

Well, according to a letter she sent Hope before ending it all, the coach had been training the young Maggie Townsend (Haley Lu Richardson), completely free, because her mom (Cecily Strong) is single and working alone, struggling to survive. Maggie has a lot of talent and could win it all, and yes, she is from their same small town! Hope doesn’t want Maggie to succeed, because if Maggie does better, the town will forget all about Hope and her gravy train will end. In the letter, it is said that Hope will receive $500,000 if she continues to coach Maggie and get her as far as she can.

Cha-fucking-ching.

Also starring Thomas Middleditch as the local gym owner, shy and shit, and Sebastian Stan as a male gymnast from the same games who actually placed first in his categories.

Hope
And let’s be honest, gold comes with a fat cash prize as well.

This is technically the best acting I have seen from Rauch. Of course, her only other character as nerdy occasionally angry hot girl on TBBT doesn’t have a lot of acting involved. Her character was consistent, angry, foul and angry at the world. She was angry for messing up her moment and never getting another moment later (growing boobs messed up her balance and she couldn’t re-qualify). Her character made sense as did most of her actions.

I also enjoyed Middleditch and Richardson in this movie. Middleditch was still playing his nervous self, but he had a much nicer character than normal. Richardson had that teenage girl idol hype going well for her, emotions all over the place, and she looked the part.

Finally, I also feel like I should highlight the scene that gave it the Graphic Nudity part of its rating. It was longer than I expected and all sorts of hilarious (it involved two gymnasts after all!), and yes, body doubles were used.

But throughout the movie I couldn’t help but feel it was lacking. The characters, although consistent, got a little bit dull. We had what seemed like a training montage that lasted forever. It just seems like something that should have had a lot more Olympics and a lot less moping to make a more exciting film overall. But it dragged in areas, and the constant back and forth of the lead definitely got on the nerves.

Good news is, it is definitely entertaining for at least one watch, and the ending doesn’t suck. I said, the ending. Doesn’t. Suck.

2 out of 4.

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