Watching a good movie be it in a theater house or in cable is one of my favorite past times. Some of my all time favorites are Braveheart, Gladiator, Legends of the Fall, Scent of a Woman, With Honor…among others.
When I became a runner, I’m hooked again in seeing movies pertaining to ‘running.’ And may I share with you my Top 10 in this category.
Here it goes:
1. BREAKING AWAY- is a 1979 coming of age film that tells the story of four teenagers in Bloomington, Indiana who have graduated from high school and are not sure what they want to do with their lives, other than hang out and go swimming in an abandoned limestone quarry. It stars Dennis Christopher, Dennis Quaid, Daniel Stern (his first film role), Jackie Earle Haley, Barbara Barrie and Paul Dooley.
It won the 1979 Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Steve Tesich, and was nominated for Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Barbara Barrie), Best Director, Best Music, Original Song Score and Its Adaptation or Best Adaptation Score and Best Picture.
The film is 8th on the List of America’s 100 Most Inspiring Movies compiled by The American Film Institute in 2006. In June 2008, AFI revealed its “Ten top Ten”—the best ten films in ten “classic” American film genres—after polling over 1,500 people from the creative community. Breaking Away was acknowledged as the eighth best film in the sports genre.
2. Chariots of Fire is a 1981 British film loosely based on historical events surrounding the British athletic team before and during the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris. The story follows Harold Abrahams, a Jew out to overcome prejudice, and Eric Liddell, a devout missionary running for the glory of God.
The title is a reference to the line, “Bring me my chariot of fire,” from the William Blake poem adapted into the hymn Jerusalem. The Blake poem was influenced by several Bible verses, most notably 2nd Kings 2:11 regarding Elijah being taken to heaven in a chariot of fire. The film’s working title was “Running” until Welland saw the scene with the singing of the hymn and decided to change the title.
The movie was praised by critics for providing a realistic look at the world of women’s athletics and for exploring the complex relationships that can exist among teammates and their coach.
4. Vision Quest is a 1985 coming of age drama starring Matthew Modine, Linda Fiorentino and Ronny Cox. It is based on the novel of the same name by author Terry Davis. In some countries it was released as Crazy For You to market on Madonna’s emerging fame and the popularity of the song. The movie was filmed in Spokane, Washington, in 1984.
Modine plays a Spokane high school wrestler who falls in love with an older woman, an aspiring artist from New Jersey on her way to San Francisco. The film includes an appearance by Madonna, her first in a major motion picture, playing a singer at a local bar/restaurant (filmed at the Big Foot Tavern on North Division in Spokane), where she performs the songs “Crazy for You” and “Gambler“.
5. Rocky is a 1976 film written by and starring Sylvester Stallone and directed by John G. Avildsen. It tells the rags-to-riches American Dream story of Rocky Balboa, an uneducated but good-hearted debt collector for a loan shark in Philadelphia. Balboa is also a club fighter who gets a shot at the world heavyweight championship when the scheduled contender breaks his hand. Also starring in Rocky are Talia Shire as Adrian, Burt Young as Adrian’s brother Paulie, Burgess Meredith as Rocky’s trainer Mickey Goldmill, and Carl Weathers as the champion, Apollo Creed.
The film, made for only $1.1 million, and shot relatively fast in 28 days, was a sleeper hit; it made over US$117.2 million, and won three Oscars, including Best Picture. The film received many positive reviews and turned Stallone into a major star. It spawned five sequels: Rocky II, III, IV, V and Rocky Balboa.
Some of those movies were not related to ‘running’, but it will motivate us to continue and persevere.
I still have 5 more left to share.
God be Praised!
LIFE IN A NUTSHELL: A gentleman is one who considers the rights of others before his own rights…. You should care more about your character than your reputation. Your character is what you really are. Your reputation is only what people think about you. -John Wooten, They call Me Coach