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Running The Sahara
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When I first read the description of the expedition that the runners Charlie Engle, Ray Zahab, and Kevin Lin planned to do I thought, "Wow!" Initially I assumed that these runners were going to run across the Sahara Desert south to north or vice versa, but when I realized that their plan was to run the Sarah from the Atlantic Ocean in Senegal in the west all the way to Egypt and the Red Sea om the east I thought "WOW!"
These ultra-endurance runners did something that most people cannot imagine. They ran the equivalent of 170 marathons in under four months' time, without taking a day off to do so.
I can't begin to imagine the stress and strain on their bodies, emotions, and souls as they plodded toward their goal. Compared to these guys I'm just a casual jogger (I compete in races only up to 1/2 marathons). My wife, who has run a few marathons, said that she's sometimes crying like a baby at the end of 26.2 miles, but the three runners in this film sometimes ran up to 2 marathons a day, every day, for over three months! Yikes!
The wear and tear on them is inestimable as they ran in temps on the ground up to 140oF and down to the low 30soF is unfathomable.
When you watch this film you will see the runners plodding along it's difficult to gauge just what their pace is, but it doesn't look especially fast, but remember that these guys are running something like 8-10 hrs/day. Maybe the film doesn't feel much like a running movie...well, that's not too surprising, since part of their goal was to experience the land and people of the Sahara and their need for access to water.
All in all I give this film 4 solid stars.Read more ›
The film's executive producer - Matt Damon - narrates this film and the cinematography is nothing short of a feature film. The camera moves, angles and the use of the "russian arm" car mounted camera jib provides some of the most spectacular images across the desert.
Running the Sahara: Beyond the Expedition is a 45 minutes "behind the scenes" view of the documentary expedition and highlights some of the struggles the expedition faced including gaining permission to enter Libya. If you love running or great documentary, you will want to watch this epic documentary.
The other problem I had with this film is the motivation of the runners. Like many ultimate athletes, these three are not doing this feat for a grand humanitarian motive, a motive that would help others or even inspire themselves to greatness; no, on the contrary, they are running it just to see if it can be done. I found the motive too narcissistic and selfish, and could not get emotionally behind the three athletes. How much better if they were running to help the people in the countries they were running through. Later in the film credits, we see that there is an effort to help those in the desert dig wells for precious water, but this is not emphasized in the film at all - it is all about them: their pain, their blisters, their hunger, their effort.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great story and even great for watching while I'm on the mill on long runs. Sadly my neighbor hood is not safe for running outdoors so it's a good movie to run to.Published 12 months ago by cheerdanz
Big fan of Charlie Engle and enjoy watching this from time to time. Well made.Published 20 months ago by Shane W. Early
I really enjoyed watching this adventure. A must see if your a ultra running geek. The story was very well put together.Published on February 18, 2014 by Donald Glass
this was exactly what my brother in law was looking for! He loved it! It was delivered and everything was great!Published on July 28, 2013 by Betsy Mengel
I expected a lot more from this video produced by Matt Damon. Its not exciting, its not thrilling, its not fun.Published on March 15, 2013 by Miguel Lopez
Great Movie, Definitely worth seeing. Extremely inspiring and really shows how your mind will quite before your body. Read morePublished on January 4, 2013 by Carmen
If you've got an avid runner in your family or friend circle, this is a must have! My brother does Ironman triathlons and he loved this as a gift!Published on December 30, 2012 by Adean
It takes a special kind of person to decide that he wants to run across the Sahara. Special as in crazy. Read morePublished on September 1, 2012 by Paul Mastin
Produced and narrated by Matt Damon not starring Matt Damon. There is not much to be learned here although it truly is a difficult task to accomplish what these runners did... Read morePublished on April 13, 2012 by NYFB