So I finally put Spirit of the Marathon on our Netflix recently and we watched it just before the New Year. Overall I thought it was just an average movie. I was kind of expecting more out of it but I can’t quite put my finger on it. I didn’t really feel an excitement build and didn’t feel much connection with the people they followed. I think there were probably many more who had very interesting stories. It was neat to see the elites train and how Deena overcame an injury to finish first. The movie did revive in me a desire to run another marathon – there is just something about running one! I don’t think the movie appealed very well to non-runners or non marathoners. Nickie was fairly bored and not sucked into the movie as I thought she might be.
The movie is inspirational and I like seeing the runners prepare, especially laying out things the night before the race and being anal about it. I think us runners can all relate to that The movie didn’t really focus in much detail about the pains and accomplishments along the way to finish 26.2 miles. They mention how hard it is and that everyone hits the wall but that wasn’t really driven home very well. I did like the archival footage and some background information on the marathon. The entire movie focused on the Chicago marathon so in some ways it was more a promo for Chicago than marathoning in general.
With all that said, I give it 3 out of 5 stars. It was inspiration and was pretty solid. It could have been more but it also could have been a lot less. I recommend watching it if you want some inspiration and want to throw it onto your Neflix. It’s probably not the best running movie for non-runners. Then again, I’m pretty critical on running documentaries and through Running on the Sun was pretty weak (1.5) and The Runner was a great movie (4) but could have used more detail.