Running The Sahara [DVD] 
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Narrated by Academy AwardTM winner Matt Damon and directed by Academy AwardTM winner James Moll, Running The Sahara is an epic true-life story of three men s unprecedented quest. Exploring the physical and emotional impact of one of greatest tests of strength and determination ever seen. The men fight through injury and extreme physical and emotional fatigue in their unbelievable 111-day journey. Charlie, Ray and Kevin travel across 6 countries, covering nearly 5,000 miles, in a journey measured as much by the depth of their experience, as by the incredible physical achievement.
Top Customer Reviews
The Matt Damon commentary was minimal - the runners did most of the commentary themselves, which was much more interesting, but I found the DVD splash title "Matt Damon commentary" a little misleading given the amount he featured in commentary.
Also, the African water problem, which let's face it, is, and has been for many many years, well-documented and featured, was only mentioned a couple of times, and then almost as an aside. I cringed when the runners gave the impression that this water-shortage / water-access issue was something they had just discovered!
Even after finishing watching the DVD, I was left wondering & confused as to what the real reason was for producing the DVD - personal achievement, publicising the African water issue, business project, or some other reason? Amazing achievement guys, but the story as told on DVD just didn't inspire me.
All this being said, I found it shocking earlier this year when news surfaced that Charlie had been arrested for fraud as "IRS special agent Robert Nordlander began looking into Engle's finances after reading a story about the ultramarathon across the desert and wondered how Engle could afford to pay for such an adventure." This just goes to show, don't try to cheat the IRS, "they read the newspaper."
All this aside, "Running the Sahara" was an enjoyable documentary about Charlie, Ray Zahab, and Kevin Lin running over 4300 miles in 111 days across Africa, the equivalent of 170 marathons with no days off. Quite a feat to say the least! The cinematography was great as was the narration, which was done by Matt Damon, who also was an executive producer on the project. There were some expected testy moments as runners can get a little grumpy and running in sandstorms would likely make one extremely on edge.Read more ›
On the down side we learn little about how the project was conceived and the logistics behind the run. We are also left in the dark about the runners and their own personal achievements. What sort of training did they do to get to their level? What races have they already competed in? The landscapes they pass through are just an attractive blur, and unlike Michael Palin's "Sahara" we do not get any in depth conversations with the locals. This makes the team appear like 'strangers in a strange land' passing through an alien landscape. They simply run and run, and then run some more. Not the stuff of great documentaries it has to be said!Read more ›
The only downside to this film is the fact that after a while of watching it you begin to forget just how far they've actually run even though they flash the distances up at regular intervals. Also part of the film is to bring to attention the water problem through the African Sahara but only on a couple of occasions are you remembered of this fact.
Overall 5 stars for a brilliantly well made documentary showing once again how far us mere mortals can be pushed.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Inspirational story of a group of runners challenging an inhospitable area of earth by running through it.Published 14 months ago by C D Cleverley
I have run several marathons and do not intend to run further than 26.2 miles any time soon, but this film still instills a sense of "what if I did that?...". Read morePublished on 23 Dec. 2010 by Mr. J. Aram
I think its a nice adventure report of the run itself. The shown shots are great.
I expected a more technical report of the race what gear was exactly used, more specific... Read more
A must watch for everyone. It's not only for runners. I took it to my parent's place to watch and they loved it too. Very well made and very inspirational. Read morePublished on 23 Nov. 2009 by Athreya Chidambi
As an ultra runner, I loved this video. It is very inspiring. These guys are amazing.Published on 1 Oct. 2009 by T. Dionisio