Rated 2.0

On the surface, Gracie is an odd little picture. Vaguely based on actress Elizabeth Shue’s own adolescent trauma of losing her brother in an auto accident and compensating by fighting to take his place on the varsity soccer team (set back in the ’70s when girls just didn’t do that, y’know?) with Shue also portraying her own mother, this is still pretty much your standard by-the-numbers empowerment fare. You’d figure Shue would put a little more creat-ivity into the piece, considering. On the other hand, it’s not intolerable, but does indulge in directorial laziness, lays heavy on the cliché and overrelience on the violins that suggest exactly what you’re supposed to feel at any given moment. It also doesn’t help that the film is a little too padded out for its own good, featuring too many training montages to creak it up to the 90-minute mark, when it could have been content to be a lean 85 minutes. More doesn’t always mean better. But for what it is, I suppose it’d make for a neat little father/daughter outing on Father’s Day, but I doubt it’ll last that long at the theater.