Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Movie Review for Chasing Red

As we continue to review movies for the Newport Beach Film Festival this week, the one we came across today was a documentary titled Chasing Red. Chasing Red is a "character-driven, feature-length documentary about the running of the bulls, Pamplona's famed fiesta, and the lives of those who live it" as stated on the website for the film on www.chasindredmovie.com. I was highly interested in this documentary because I always wanted to find out more about this highly publicized festival that takes place every summer in Spain.

The documentary follows the eight day festival through the eyes of five runners: David, Bill, Dennis, Josiah and Angus. We see how they perform in the several runs that they participate in during the festival. We also learn how dangerous it can be as several of them get hurt during the festival. Dennis is one of the more experienced runners and we see him perform some difficult runs in the film. He becomes somewhat of a mentor to the other runners in the film as well. For David, bull running is in his blood as it runs in the family. For Bill, it has become a sort of therapy as it has transformed him into a better person. He used to struggle with drugs and a mental disorder and ever since running with the bulls, it has completely changed him for the better. Josiah is a painter and new to the bull run and he has the opportunity to get mentored by the more experienced runners. He shows up to the bull run wearing everyday normal colors but days into the festival he realizes he should go shopping and wear the traditional white suit that everyone else wears as a sign of respect for the festival.

The bulls that are used in the bull run are bred specifically for this event and are then used for a bullfight at the end of the run. It's interesting to learn about how the Spaniards take this event so seriously and how much effort is put into making sure these animals are treated with dignity and respect up until the very end.

I really enjoyed watching the film and learned a lot about the Running of the Bulls festival that takes place in Pamplona every year in Spain.

*Picture credit taken from www.arizonafoothillsmagazine.com

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