Annette Bening plays long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad in this inspirational sports biopic.
If you’re in the mood for a heartwarming crowd-pleaser that lifts your spirit then look no further than Nyad.
The biographical sports movie stars Annette Bening as the long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad, who first attempted to swim between Cuba and Florida in 1978 when she was 28 years old.
Now in her 60s and many years into retirement, Diana realises that she will never be satisfied until she completes the crossing. Despite everybody’s pessimism, she throws herself into training, convinces her best friend Bonnie (Jodie Foster) to become her coach and recruits a team – including navigator John (Rhys Ifans) – to help her become the first person to complete the swim without a shark cage.
Crossing the Straits of Florida is no walk in the park. Diana has to swim the 110 miles from Havana to Key West, a trip which takes more than two days straight through waters teaming with sharks, jellyfish and Portuguese man o’wars.
The odds seem stacked against Diana but she refuses to give up, confident that she is in the perfect place mentally and physically to push through the exhaustion and make it to Key West.
While the challenge is a solo endurance test, it takes a team to pull it off, but the self-centred Diana doesn’t see that or realise the sacrifices they have made to allow her to achieve her dream. This builds a tension between the group, particularly Diana and Bonnie.
The two leads are brought to life brilliantly by Julia Cox’s smart screenplay and the performances by Bening and Foster, who bounce off each other wonderfully and are in peak physical shape.
Due to the nature of Diana’s story, the film does feel little repetitive. The swims are very different and never boring, however, some of the flashbacks and lines of dialogue are reused a few times.
Thankfully, that is the only drawback in an otherwise uplifting, empowering and inspiring film that proves you’re never too old to achieve your dream.
In selected cinemas from Friday 20th October and on Netflix from 3rd November.
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