The opening shot of the new documentary Hood To Coast starts with a lone runner, making her way through the darkness. Her headlamp is bobbing up and down and only the sound of her footfalls break the silence of the night. We see a series of small lights stretched out behind her, as other runners make their way, quietly padding through the night as individuals, but all going in the same direction. Then, out of almost nowhere, another light comes from behind her and like a jet-plane, another run blows past her, leaving her in his wake.
The crowd at last night’s premiere here in Portland instantly roared with laughter upon seeing this. And they were not laughing at the runner being passed, but rather laughing at the thought that at some time this had happened to each and every one of them. Being roadkill is part of Hood To Coast and this audience got it.
Hood To Coast (The Movie) made its debut last night in Portland, home-base to the iconic relay that draws more than 12,000 runners and walkers here every August. The film was also shown in theaters nationwide as part of a one-time event that drew runners from all parts of the United States. The Portland premiere was a unique and wonderful way to see this new film, because the audience was wholly made up of people that have not only run this event, but love it to the very core. These were, after all, the folks that were willing to up to $75 to see the movie on its opening night. They were hard-core, many of them sporting running shoes with there black-tie attire, and they loved every minute of this movie.
After the film, one of its producers told me that the audience did react differently here in Portland. “They laughed and clapped at points that were different than other audiences that have seen the film,” she told me. “The film really connected with this audience.”
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