The owner of the New York Knicks offers an ordinary Joe the chance to become a coach in a shoot-out. Eddie, a limo driver and fan, wins and starts to turn the team around. But can she overcome the owner's plans to move the team?
Be it Major League or The Mighty Ducks, Hollywood is always partial to the sports movie preferably charting the dramatic rise of the underdog: a group of luckless but likeable losers who are transformed into high fivin' winners via some unorthodox coaching methods and good old-fashioned belief in themselves. The latest addition to the canon is Eddie, an amiable Goldberg vehicle that dogmatically replays the feelgood sports movie playbook to the letter.
Goldberg plays the eponymous heroine, a loudmouth basketball fan who wins the chance to become "coach for a game" of the ailing New York Knicks. Opportunistically sensing an attendance-boosting publicity stunt, glitzy team owner Wild Bill Burgess (Langella) appoints Eddie as the permanent coach and she is thrown into a whirl of New York celebrity-dom (neatly embroidered by self-mocking cameos from Donald Trump and former Mayor Ed Koch).
Goldberg attacks the role with her usual gusto but her now over-familiar brand of snappy quips and street wisdom are not enough to enliven the one-dimensional character. Moreover her team simply constitutes the obvious stereotypes (the superstar who is not a team player, the old veteran with a career threatening injury). Any potentially interesting notions the story does flirt with - how big business glamorises the passion out of sport - are glossed over in favour of the easy laugh and an all-pervasive blandness.
The team's inevitable journey to glory is played out with no surprises and few crowd-pleasing moments, even skimping on the slamdunkin' basketball action. In short, Eddie is easy-going, safe and stale.