Wednesday, January 30, 2008

"Cool Runnings"

The climactic ending of the film, Cool Runnings, always chokes me up.

Four Jamaican bob-sledders experience equipment malfunction which causes a tremendous crash. Emergency crews rush to them, but slide to a stop on the ice when the team appears to be getting up. Picking up their bobsled, the four athletes, shaken and battered from the crash, lift and carry their inoperable sled over slippery ice to the finish line.

"We have to finish the race," says Derice, the one who is the heart and soul of the team.

It's all the more moving because of a quiet, conversational scene earlier in the movie, before the last bobsled race of the 1988 Olympics. Derice knows his coach was a U.S bob-sledder, an Olympian who'd won medals, and had two medals stripped away for cheating, for attaching weights to the front of his teams' sled for increased speed. He wants to know the reasons why...

Coach, pensively: "Why did I cheat? It's quite simple really. I had to win. You see, Derice, I'd made winning my whole life, and when you make winning your whole life, you have to keep on winning no matter what. You understand that?"

Derice, shaking his head slowly: "No. I don't understand, Coach. You had two gold medals. You had it all."

Coach: "A gold medal is a wonderful thing. But if you're not enough without it, you'll never be enough with it."

Derice: "Coach, how will I know if I'm enough?"

Coach: "When you cross that finish line you'll know."

Integrity intact, crossing the finish line, Derice knows. He is enough.

6 comments:

Sandy's Notes said...

Boy, no kidding. I haven't seen this one, but what a great lesson to learn.

Deanna said...

I always choke up at that ending, too. One of my favorite movies, that I often forget how well I like until I watch it again.

And, of course, when one of us takes a spill, I have to remark, "Ya dead, mon?"

How season-appropriate to watch it, too!

tshsmom said...

I still remember the opening ceremonies for the Olympics that year, and hearing that there was a Jamaican BOBSLED team. I immediately blurted out: "HOW?" ;)

My friend K, who died last April, and her husband did some mission work in Jamaica for awhile. They worked with, and became friends with the bobsled team.

Cecily said...

Oh bother... I haven't seen this movie and I just couldn't stop reading. :-) Then again, I'm not very good with suspense, so I'm sure I'll still enjoy watching it one day!

Cherie said...

Sandy: Yes, a good lesson indeed.

Deanna: We do the, "Are ya dead mahn?" thing, too. "Yeah mahn." or "Not dead." Season appropriate for sure. Especially THIS year. :)

Tshs: That is so COOL about your friend, K, meeting the team. I'll bet she has great stories.

Cecily: Stupid me I never even considered that I was spoiling the movie....dumb...in my defense, I HAVE come down with a high temperature flu and am just now coming out of the delirium that was ensuing as I wrote this post. So sorry. But, yes, I hope you'll watch it someday anyway.

SEAN RECKLESS said...

quote: "miles from nowhere, guess I'll take my time,
look up at the mountain,
I've yet to climb, Ooo,
when I reach there.