By the time the movie ends, one hour and 40 minutes later - the time it would take for an elite runner to get to mile 20 of the marathon - you have seen how the marathon affects a person. Everyone has peaks and valleys; times when they are smooth and flowing to the times it is a struggle to take another step. A spectator has a sign that says “You’re All Crazy” and even though it is funny, it has a note of truth to it. It is crazy to do this. No one ever said it wasn’t, but no one ever said it wasn’t worth it, either.
If I had one complaint, it would be that not enough time was spent with each of the athletes. I would have loved to hear more about how Daniel Njenga went from Kenya to living and training in Japan, for example, or how Leah Caille managed to juggle single motherhood with the massive amount of time required to train for this. How did Ryan Bradley and his wife end up in Europe running so many marathons? All things that were touched on lightly but just made me want to learn more about them. The problem, of course, is the time required. To get into such depth with every athlete would have made the movie at least another hour long.
On a personal note, I am currently training for my first marathon in May. After seeing this movie, those long runs on a Sunday morning in the dark don’t seem so crazy anymore.
The film is currently in limited release in select theaters. For more information on upcoming showtimes, visit the film's official website.