JERRY MAGUIRE (15)
D: Cameron Crowe
Columbia Tristar/Gracie Films (James L. Brooks, Laurence Mark, Richard Sakai & Cameron Crowe)
W: Cameron Crowe
DP: Janusz Kaminski
Ed: Joe Hutshing
Mus: Nancy Wilson
PD: Stephen J. Lineweaver
Tom Cruise (Jerry Maguire), Cuba Gooding, Jr. (Rod Tidwell), Renee Zellweger (Dorothy Boyd), Kelly Preston (Avery Bishop), Bonnie Hunt (Laurel Boyd), Jerry O'Connell (Frank Cushman), Jay Mohr (Bob Sugar), Jonathan Lipnicki (Ray Boyd), Regina King (Marcee Tidwell), Todd Louiso (Chad)
Tom Cruise had been a top box office draw for over a decade without really testing the water in romantic comedies, sticking to blockbuster material like Top Gun, Mission: Impossible & The Firm and Oscar-nominated dramas like Rain Man & Born On The Fourth Of July.
Jerry Maguire, however, was a character which fit like a glove for the film star, and he delivers one of his best ever performances as the yuppie-like sports agent who, suffering from a bout of good conscience, writes a soul-searching mission statement for his company to take heed, pleading that the onus should be on personal relationships with their clients, rather than the vast wealth that rolls in through commercial endorsement.
He is subsequently sacked from his firm, breaking up with his socialite fiancé in the process, and with the aid of his one remaining client (an American football player with a bad attitude) and a loyal secretary (Zellweger), Maguire attempts to rebuild his reputation.
What makes this film work so well is the relationship between the three principal characters and a juvenile performance from Jonanthan Lipnicki which will melt even the most cynical of hearts. The film is stolen, however, by the exuberant Cuba Gooding, Jr. as the football player, Rod Tidwell, who lights up the screen in every scene in which he appears.