Runner, is a short and amazing film about the beauty of running. In 1962, Canada’s National Film Board commissioned a first-time director to make an 11-minute, black-and-white movie about a 19-year-old distance runner who would later become an Olympian, and have legendary poet W.H. Auden—not Canadian, and not a runner—write a poem as narration. Runner has receded into the archives of film history, and that’s a shame. This is why you should care about this strange little film.
Runner is the story of Bruce Kidd, a Toronto racer training for the Commonwealth games. A young dreamer, driven to succeed. He would go on to shatter 15 Canadian records, and a few American records as well, including one when he beat New Zealand’s Murray Halberg, the 1960 5,000 meter Olympic champion. He retired after the 1964 Olympics.
The film is mesmerizing, captivating, impressive and inspirational at the same time. Now, personally I have always watched B/W movies from the 40’s to the 60’s, just as much as I have been listening to jazz since my teens so I totally dig this piece of art. If you are unfamiliar with the B/W movie era and its way of filming and storytelling, let alone poetry and jazz for that matter, I urge you to try something new and spend the next 11 minutes of your life watching this. As one runner to another, I urge you to open your mind, be in the moment and this will surely add something of value to your personal development.
Afterwards, I suggest you read an extensive article about the film over at the Literray Hub website.