' Cinema Romantico: 9.79* Trailer

Saturday, August 18, 2012

9.79* Trailer

9.79* stands for the world record that Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson set in the 100 meter dash at the Seoul Olympics of 1988 that was promptly disavowed when Johnson was found to have all the steroids in his body. The gold medal was then awarded to the second place finisher, Carl Lewis, who then got the world record with his time of 9.92 and who - only much, much later - was revealed to have failed a drug test at the U.S. Olympic trials that was never disclosed (those cagey Americans!). In fact, only two of the runners in the field never tested positive for drugs in their careers, including the absurdly unappreciated Calvin Smith who had the world record for four years (9.93) and who no one knows because he never won anything of consequence because he was always running against dudes drugged to the nines. I hope to the gods of sprinting he gets his due in this film.

What film? "9.79*", of course, directed by Daniel Gordon for ESPN's second round of 30 for 30 sports documentaries. It will make its television debut on Tuesday night October 9 at 8 PM (calendar....circled) but before that happens it will make a premiere at TIFF, the Toronto International Film Festival, the biggest, baddest film festival of 'em all (Cannes is just a slippery debutante compared to TIFF and we all know it), which begins September 6.

At least two of my film enthusiast compadres will be at TIFF and while I am uncertain if running and/or sprinting in any way whatsoever interests them, well, Ryan and Sam, I will not beg for you to see "9.79*." I'll simply say that if I was there.......

8 comments:

Ryan McNeil said...

I will never forget being up in the middle of the night on a Saturday to watch that race live - nor will I forget how shocked and confused I was to be leaving swimming practice on Monday night to the news that Johnson's medal had been stripped.

I *do* hope to catch up with this film at TIFF and at the moment, I'm at the mercy of the gods of festival scheduling.

Thanks for posting the trailer!

Nick Prigge said...

It's make me so happy to hear you got up in the middle of the night to watch it live. It's always comforting when you learn there are others like you out there.

Totally understand if you can't get to it at TIFF. And hey, it's going to be televised within a month anyway. I'm sure there will be more exotic stuff to check out.

blahblahblah Toby said...

There's something about these ESPN documentaries, I have low expectations for them perhaps but they are always fascinating stories.
This one looks/sounds like another great one.
I'm gonna have to check if ESPN Australia is showing them or if it's 100% baseball 100% of the time.

Nick Prigge said...

The ESPN docs are kinda hit or miss. Some of them are really quite good, but a lot of times I feel like it's just recycled information spiffed up or they let their subjects off the hook too easily.

blahblahblah Toby said...

I must have missed the bad ones. Most of the subject matter isnt of interest to me to begin with so that probably accounts for it.

Nick Prigge said...

They are very American-sport centric.

blahblahblah Toby said...

In the next fortnight ESPN Australia has the following to choose from:
"Muhammad and Larry"
"The U"
"The 16th Man"
"Marion Jones: Press Pause"

Would you recommend any?

Nick Prigge said...

I greatly enjoyed "The U", but that comes with a big but. It's specifically about the Miami Hurricane college football program and college football is my favorite sport. I'm not sure it would be as enjoyable otherwise.

"Muhammad and Larry", though, is really kind of a tragic story and pretty well done, if I recall.