Skid Row marathon: A run for a different purpose

Judge Craig Mitchell preparing for the Skid Row marathon

A new documentary called Skid Row Marathon tells the tale of a US judge as he coaches a long-distance running club in a well-known impoverished area.

The story follows Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Craig Mitchell coaching a group from the Midnight Mission over a four-year period. The unlikely cast of would-be runners come from LA’s infamous Skid Row, an area documented as being largely forgotten by society.

The inspirational teaser video dropped into my inbox this week, so I thought I’d share it here.

Skid Row Marathon teaser

As the accompanying notes state, Skid Row Marathon shows runners battling the fierce pull of addiction and homelessness at every turn.

Above the clear sporting element of course, the documentary is a story about second chances and overcoming obstacles.

The film acknowledges the devastating effects homelessness can have. It showcases how the discipline of running and power of friendship can change lives.

And it’s a perfect example of using the liberating power of running.

This is evident in the training, which raises the spirits of Skid Row’s inhabitants. It gives them a sense of purpose and new lease of life. If club members refrain from drug abuse, stay off the streets and out of prison, Judge Mitchell will take them around the world to run marathons.

From the trailer alone this is a moving tale. It looks ideal viewing with marathon season almost upon us.

Skid Row Marathon has won 13 awards from 10 different US film festivals during 2017-2018 and is being released in the UK this summer.

The film is to be distributed by CinEvents as an exclusive, one night only, Event Cinema release. This is set for Wednesday May 9, 2018 in over 100 selected multiplex and independent cinemas.

Find out where to catch the documentary across the UK.

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