Inspiration and the right attitude are caught, not taught. This week’s DVD is all about being in the right frame of mind and staying positive, even when things don’t go your way.
Breaking Away [20th Century Fox] Release Date: 1979
Starring: Dennis Christopher, Dennis Quaid, Daniel Stern and Jackie Earle Haley
Dave [Christopher], Mike [Quaid], Cyril [Stern] and Moocher [Haley], four townie friends who live near Indiana University, have just graduated from high school and must decide what to do with their lives.
Three of the four are fixed on staying together, even if it means getting dead-end jobs as stonecutters. However, Dave is lost in his dream of becoming a famous Italian cyclist. Although he appears to be happy, he’s afraid to move on from adolescence and pursue his future.
When the four are ostracized by the town and university, they decide to show everyone that they’re worthy of respect by competing in the Little 500, the largest collegiate bike race in the U.S., held at IU before the Indy 500.
This film relates to all high schoolers—jocks and non-jocks—as it explores issues faced by most young adults, such as relationships with parents, self-confidence and class bias.
STACK’s Take: OK, it’s a ’70s movie about bike racing, but the themes of chasing your dreams and proving your doubters wrong resonate with every athlete. The climactic finish is predictable, but the movie keeps you on the edge of your seat and cheering for the underdog townies.