In Honor Of The NYC Marathon: 7 Memorable Runners From TV And Film

Monday, November 7 by

Forrest Gump – Forrest Gump

We all react differently after one-night stands, but Forrest Gump’s response to an empty bed after hooking up with lifelong friend Jenny is to run across the United States several times over the course of 3 years, 2 months, 14 days, and 16 hours. Apparently, this idea appealed to a handful of other masochists who enjoy shin splints and hanging toenails.

We don’t know many details about Forrest’s endeavor. Did he sleep? What did he eat? He surely had to buy new shoes, as well, didn’t he? In this whimsical take on a man’s Quixotic journey, we can suspend a lot of disbelief, but I have a hard time believing that Forrest can just up and run 10,000 miles without training. To be fair though, I’m not sure any training can prepare you for that, so I don’t know what to believe.

“Jog, Forrest, Jog!”

Ben Richards – The Running Man

The running in this Schwarzenegger film is as much metaphorical as it is literal, but I can’t in good conscience omit a film called The Running Man from this list, can I? No. I can’t.

This film follows imprisoned Ben Richards as he fights to vacate his unlawful incarceration by competing in a nationally televised game show in which contestants must negotiate a series of stages. The winners are freed, but Richards eventually learns that no contestant has ever completed the course.

This film portrayed American dystopia before it was cool to depict American dystopias, so points for that as well. Double points for casting uber-sleazy Richard Dawson as the host of the game show. Quadruple points for killing him by strapping him into a rocket sled, then sending him into a wall.

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