“A race is a work of art that people can look at and be affected in as many ways as they're capable of understanding.”
“To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.”
- Steve Prefontaine
'The Gift' is a celebration of the tireless rhythm of running. This short documentary montage brings together moments among the Rarámuri (Tarahumara) indigenous runners of the Copper Canyon region of Chihuahua, Mexico, with international athletes competing on the track, American ultra runners going out for rim to rim traverses of the Grand Canyon, Kenyan runners pushing each other in training, and solo trail runners exploring the mountains of Colorado.
The piece is set to the music of Burundi drummers. During a world class IAAF track meet held in Brussels each summer, Burundi drumming bands drum trackside to the runners’ cadence. They pick up the drumming pace as the race goes on to usher the runners' heart beats into the same elevated rhythm, urging them into faster paces and ultimately world record setting times.
Woven into the sound world of the film is audio of the announcer & cheering crowds from one of history’s greatest races: the 1972 Munich Olympic 5000m Final, in which Steve Prefontaine, a young American runner who went on to set 15 national records, performed perhaps his most beautiful work, for he saw racing as artistic expression. Prefontaine’s legacy as one of America's most spirited underdogs ushered in the running boom of the 1970s and inspired generations of runners to come.
'The Gift' is a collaboration between TRUE MVMNT and The Colorado Running Ranch (coloradorunningranch.com).
Filming took place across multiple locations:
Copper Canyon, Chihuahua, Mexico
Cobb Track & Angell Field at Stanford University
Kidd Field at the University of Texas at El Paso
San Juan Mountains outside Durango, CO
South Rim, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
A production by Colorado Running Ranch & TRUE MVMNT
Directors: Shara & Wesley Walker
Sound Design & Mix: Devin Mooers