Director: Carroll Ballard | 120 minutes | action, drama, sports | Actors: Matthew Modine, Jennifer Gray, Cliff Robertson, Jack Thompson, Stellan Skarsgård, Rebecca Miller, Ned Vaughn, Peter Montgomery, Elmer Ahlwardt, Saylor Creswell, James Rebhorn, Michael Higgins, Ron Colbin, Ken Kensei, Bill Buell
Find a particular segment and make a film about it, that seems to be the idea in “Wind”. A film about boats, for example. The story is told from the perspective of those who put their heart and soul into racing sailing. Still, you don’t have to be a fanatic sailor to enjoy this film. The beautiful images more than make up for it. The few nautical terms mentioned are explained by a reporter in the film, so that as a viewer you do not feel aloof.
The story is loosely based on the true story of Dennis Conner who embarrassed America in 1983 by being the first American to lose the America’s Cup in the race’s 140-year history. The theme of the film is therefore about winning that Cup and not really about the influence that wind has on sailing, which could be inferred from the title of the film. The theme of wind is only briefly touched on.
“Wind” was directed by Carroll Ballard and produced by Francis Ford Coppola. Apparently a combination that works well, because Ballard and Coppola have worked together on a film before. In 1979 they made “The Black Stallion”, a film that can be compared to “Wind”. Both films are about the outsider who has little chance of winning, but who still has a chance through hard work and perseverance.
The characters in “Wind” (poor performance by Jennifer Gray) are a bit superficial so you can’t identify too much with the players. That’s too bad. The despair that comes with a race where everything has to be lost is not visible in the players. As a result, the end is quite predictable and not really exciting. For real sailing fans this will be a great movie, because how many movies have been made in this segment now? Unfortunately, “Wind” is a somewhat flat film, there are times when you get the feeling that you are watching a documentary about sailing. But the beautiful images on location, the good camera work and the excitement that comes from racing, make this film worth watching.