Well it’s time for a mockumentary! Marathon, written and directed by Anthony Guidubaldi and Keith Strausbaug, throw together a hilarious cast of pseudo-professional misfits who are determined to win this year’s Devil’s Canyon Marathon, yet keep failing at every turn.
The first 10 minutes couldn’t help but transport me to any of the Christopher Guest-style mockumentaries like A Mighty Wind and Best In Show, as both had me laughing even after the credits ended. However, those are huge shoes to fill and so this movie is just be taken on its own merit.
Marathon feels like an on-going dysfunctional therapy session, if you’ve ever partook in one of those. We get a glimpse into each of the runners’ lives, including Ed (Jimmy Slonina) the organizer of the race, who is silently swimming in all of life’s woeful regrets, yet making the best out of it by proudly showing the devilish swag t-shirts he had made, after all there are some Satanists running the race – inclusiveness for all. I am pretty convinced he still lives in his parents’ basement.
Ryan (Andrew Hansen) is up next, a self-absorbed divorcé who marches to the beat of his own drum and insists on his tried and true crab-loading (NOT carb-loading) system to prepare for the upcoming race. When one brings out the superiority complex, you don’t need a therapist to note there’s esteem issues and umm… 8mm to play with.
Jenna (Natalie Sullivan) is right behind Ryan as far as competitiveness goes. Keep your eye on the prize. She intends to get the fastest marathon time dressed as… you got it, a banana! I think she’s also a bit of a closet nymph but she has a lot of layers to peel back to figure out who she really is.
Of course, we can’t forget Shareef (Tavius Cortez) who must have a bullseye target on his back since the police continue to show up wherever he goes and try to attack him. Any reason? Nay, just the usual racial profiling that still sadly exists today. To make matters even more complicated, his sister is a big bully and tries to undermine his confidence any chance she gets.
Abby (Anais Thomassian) is just on the struggle bus as a new mom, and desperately longs for a moment of peace to herself so she can train for the race. Her identity is glued to being a mom though, and as a side note, her clumsiness is really getting out of hand.
Emilou (Kimia Behpoornia) is motivated, motivated to do nothing. There is a sense of epic levels of apathy. She quits before she even starts just about everything and is damn proud of it – hey pass the chips.
I will also give a shout out to the Cody LeBoeuf, the Water Station Attendant. They never get any love.
The on-going counter-intuitive guru inspiration from Ryan is hilarious and probably stands out the most, as we follow the runners’ through a camera lens and share glimpses into their complicated lives. As continual setbacks happen before the marathon, the competition gets fiercer day by day, ultimately leading to race day where chaos ensues.
Overall, a fun romp of a film, not to be taken seriously, thus a heads up to anyone reading that everyone is going to be mocked in some fashion. It’s like if you’re going to a comedy club, don’t sit in the front row and expect not to be picked on. Hell, don’t even go to the show in the first place because you may be the comic’s next victim. The movies pushes the boundaries, and in today’s sociopolitical climate, some may enjoy the humour and others may cringe. If you want to venture into these comical waters, you be the judge for yourself!
For more about Marathon, visit IMDB.