Sunday, June 07, 2009

R&R: Movies

Just ordered: Spirit of the Marathon DVD
I've watched the NOVA documentary, Marathon Challenge, on YouTube a couple times now. In that program they picked new runners and trained them for the NYC Marathon.

This movie might be based on that documentary. But it's changed somewhat: They added in more professional athletes (Deena), interviewed famous running authors (John Bingham) and filmed runners from various continents preparing for the Chicago Marathon. The original program was interesting and educational. The movie/documentary got great reviews on Amazon so I'm looking forward to it!

I just finished watching Running on the Sun. This DVD was rented via Netflix but I would like to own it.

I first heard of the Badwater Ultramarathon from my marathon Coach, Karl Keltner who is a former Marine and participated in Badwater. In fact, he was training for an ultra event while coaching us and during our marathon he would run in each team member. So basically, he'd run all over the course of 26.2 miles, visiting and checking in on each runner. Then as one neared finishing he would run up to be with them and after they crossed, he would run back to the next runner to cross with them, and so forth. It was unreal to watch when you're struggling to just lay down your own first marathon.

Running on the Sun was a pretty good documentary, focusing on the race but mostly the participants and how they trained and then how they raced in those brutal conditions. Each runner usually has a crew helping them and funds themselves: the race entry, travel and accommodations, their own gear & food, a vehicle (usually rented), the gas, the crew (free if they're your family/friends), supplies, etc. It was interesting to see how people struggled just to particpate in the race, not to mention whether or not they finish!

The movie isn't high budget. But, if you aren't a movie snob and are interested in running stories, this is a good one to watch.

I'd like to watch, Dancing the Bear, a story about two women training and racing this 100 mile ultra. It's not available on Netflix or Amazon however, so not sure how I can get my hands on it. There is a review of it on The Final Sprint Web site. It also got 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon although some people said it wasn't exciting enough. I'm thinking; running long distances is a challenge in entertainment sometimes even to the runner not to mention a producer trying to get effect out of every mile.

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