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At Theaters: 9/25/1998 On Video: 2/16/1999
Rated: PG-13 Length: 1 hr. 57 min.
Internet: Web Site Movie ID: 099806
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Inc.
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Storyline Heading

A story about the late Oregon running legend Steve Prefontaine and his coach, Bill Bowerman. Bowerman helped create a generation of world-class runners at the University of Oregon and went on to coach at the Olympics.

Movie Type (Genre) Heading
Drama - WITHOUT LIMITS is a well-made biopicture of "the James Dean of track," Steve Prefontaine, who made his mark on the sport in the late-'60s and early-'70s. Since the focus of the story is on the factors that drive the main character, rather than on the minutae of the sport, WITHOUT LIMITS should have a fairly broad-based appeal.
Cast and Crew Heading
Billy Crudup (Sleepers)
Donald Sutherland (Citizen X)
Monica Potter (Con Air)
Producer: Tom Cruise (The Frightening Frammis)
Director: Robert Towne (Mission: Impossible)
Producer: Paula Wagner (Mission Impossible)
Production Notes Heading
About The Production
Training For The Event
Pre's Legacy
Content Heading
PROFANITY: Frequent and occasionally extreme.
SEX/NUDITY: Bare buttocks; one sex scene with no nudity.
VIOLENCE: TV coverage of 1972 Olympic hostage drama.
DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Casual drinking.
ACTION: Several races which generate tension.
COMEDY: As with most dramas, there are occasional humorous moments.

Pictures © Warner Bros. Pictures Inc. ®
All Rights Reserved.

Critic's Review Heading
Above Average
During the late '60s and early '70s, Steve Prefontaine singlehandedly revitalized the sport of track, transforming it from a second-tier college activity to a major national interest. Prefontaine became something of a hero, the James Dean of running. As far as true sports movies go, Prefontaine's story has all of the elements necessary for an engaging motion picture (except a happy ending), and director Robert Towne does the best he can with the material at his disposal. Consequently, Without Limits makes for an engrossing examination of the will to win, the importance of icons in American sports, and the interference of money in amateur athletics. Above all, however, this film is an effective character study of a figure who has attained an almost-mythical status among track-and-field followers.

Opinion Heading

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Those who saw Steve Prefontaine race, who knew him, who competed against him, called him "Pre" as a sign of respect. He revolutionized his sport with his competitive ferocity and rock star's ability to ignite the crowd. In this country, during his lifetime, he was undefeated at his distance and held all seven American records between 2,000 and 10,000 meters.

He ran one of the more memorable races at the Munich Olympics and was strongly favored to win at the Montreal Games in 1976, but never got the chance. In 1975 Steve Prefontaine was killed in a car accident. He was 24 and had just been recognized as the most popular track athlete in the world.

Blunt, cocky and charismatic, his incessant willingness to push himself to the ultimate limit earned him the enduring respect and affection of runners and sports enthusiasts around the world. He left many of his fellow competitors and fans sharing one common recollection - where they were and what they were doing when they heard that Pre had died.

This movie is about the late Oregon running legend Steve Prefontaine and his coach, Bill Bowerman. Bowerman helped create a generation of world-class runners at the University of Oregon and went on to coach at the Olympics.

An enigmatic, commanding man, revered by his team and respected the world over for his training accomplishments, he became Pre's close friend and mentor. Although taken aback by Prefontaine's unwillingness to substitute strategy for a fervent desire to run at the front of the pack, Bowerman also respected the young track star and came to know him as few others did.

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