Canadian Sport Film Festival 2017: Our Review Of ‘Crossing The Line’

Canadian Sport Film Festival 2017: Our Review Of ‘Crossing The Line’

There was a time that the world of sports was dominated by track and field athletes.  The likes of Carl Lewis and Jackie Joyner-Kersee were household names and heroes to legions of fans.  One of those athletes was Danny Harris, an American hurdler who reached the peak of his sport but saw his life fall apart in the face of his life’s greatest obstacle: his addiction to crack cocaine.  Crossing the Line, a documentary from director David Tryhorn, tells the tale of Harris’ rise and fall.

At the height of his career Danny Harris was an Olympic silver medalist and gained international fame after beating Edwin Moses, thereby breaking Moses’ streak of 122 competitive wins in the 400 metre hurdle.  Inwardly however Harris was battling demons.  An orphan at the age of 13 he focused hard on his sport and did not develop the coping strategies to deal with his real world troubles.  After being offered crack at a party he found himself hooked and soon was spiraling out of control and at risk of losing his career.

The film is a fascinating account of one man’s struggle and success but also provides insight from various athletes about addiction in sports and the blind eye that the sports world turns towards those with drug problems.  Instead of offering them assistance and support, associations and competition groups penalize those that fail drug tests, even when the drugs detract instead of enhance their performance.

It is a beautifully shot film, with poignant and thought provoking interviews with Harris, Moses and others, that serves as a reminder of a time in sports ruled by the gods of the track and a lesson that while athletes may seem invincible they are, in fact, all too human.

This post was written by
Comments are closed.