Long Time Running
Director: Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier
Starring: Gord downie, Paul Langlois, Gord sinclair, Bobby Baker
Running time: 1 hours, 37 min. footage of weeping fans.
the film doesn’t dig too far back into the band’s history because, again, this is a movie made for hip fans. they know how the hip rose to domestic stardom and sell-out stadiums. these people helped the band get there, after all.
if you’re a hip fan, be prepared to cry. if you’re not, bring Kleenex anyway. two exceptional moments in Long Time Running are not enough to transform the film from just another concert documentary to something much more special, but they certainly help. the first is an interview with Karyn ruiz, the designer of downie’s iconic hat. as she explains her process in some detail, she carefully and lovingly envelops a piece of fabric inscribed with two of her favourite hip lyrics inside of the accessory. it’s a unique, intimate and lovely moment of a fan finding her own way to connect with a beloved musician.
the other moment involves downie kissing fellow tour mates and companions after each show. this includes men. and all on the lips. We’re not talking quick pecks here, either, but full-on, passionate smooches that defy the usual protective guard straight men keep up lest they are accused of being gay. it’s a wonderful gesture that speaks to downie’s signature commitment to authenticity — not only as an artist but as a person, and the way it inspires everyone around him.