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Personal Best (1982)

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The intertwined lives and loves of three highly-ranked athletes striving for the national team; Chris bounces between the beds of male coach Terry and her female friend, competitor, and role model Tory.

Director:

Robert Towne

Writer:

Robert Towne

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mariel Hemingway ... Chris Cahill
Scott Glenn ... Terry Tingloff
Patrice Donnelly Patrice Donnelly ... Tory Skinner
Kenny Moore Kenny Moore ... Denny Stites
Jim Moody ... Roscoe Travis
Kari G. Peyton Kari G. Peyton ... Penny Brill (as Kari Gosswiller)
Jodi Anderson Jodi Anderson ... Nadia 'Pooch' Anderson
Maren Seidler Maren Seidler ... Tanya
Martha Watson Martha Watson ... Sheila
Emily Dole ... Maureen
Pam Spencer Pam Spencer ... Jan
Deby Laplante Deby Laplante ... Trish
Mitzi McMillin Mitzi McMillin ... Laura
Jan Glotzer Jan Glotzer ... Karen
Jan Van Reenen Jan Van Reenen ... Yelovitch
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Storyline

1976. Chris Cahill and Torry Skinner are US national caliber track and field athletes, Chris in the 100 meter hurdles, and Torry in the pentathlon. Chris has the natural ability to be great but she doesn't possess the confidence or drive, while Torry, who has less natural ability, psychologically knows what it takes to be great, leading to Torry making the Olympic team finishing second in her event, while Chris has a disastrous Olympic trial. Torry can see the potential in Chris, and tries to convince her coach at Cal Poly, Terry Tingloff, to coach Chris, Terry who will only allow Chris to train with the team without his guidance in he only having seen her disastrous performance at the trials. Although not ideal in that no scholarship money is involved, Chris accepts the offer against the wishes of her father, who currently coaches her. In their time together, Chris and Torry embark on a relationship, each seeing in the other what each doesn't possess, their attraction thus sexual as ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 June 1982 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

As Parceiras See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$99,797, 7 February 1982, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$5,672,311
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

The Geffen Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While in post-production, the sound engineers could not quite capture the sound they needed to simulate when a runner's foot hit the track during a race. They finally created the right sound by taking pieces of bundled audio tape and hitting the floor of the sound booth with the tape bundles. See more »

Goofs

Tory goes through the other runners twice. See more »

Quotes

Terry Tingloff: The high jump is a masochists event-it always ends on failure.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in It's in the Water (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Rosalinda's Eyes
Written and Sung by Billy Joel
Courtesy of CBS Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The best movie about athletes ever
13 July 2000 | by rlcsljoSee all my reviews

I believe this movie was the first, and best, movie to treat the relationship between sex and athletic performance in a serious and non stereotypical way. Other films treated athletes as either eunuch/priests whose only concern was their athletic performance, or as over sexed satyrs who required sex as a release and/or distraction from the rigors of training, or sexual relations were gratuitously thrown in as a prerequisite romantic line to draw in a bigger audience.In Personal Best the sexual aspect was actually integral to the plot. We see how sex gets people better opportunities, drives wedges between competitors, and induces self sacrifice--albeit in this case all for naught.I will admit that some of the nude scenes appeared to be gratuitous on the surface, but when you analyze the film you see it was really necessary to show how all those firm toned naked bodies in semi-erotic poses (necessary for maximum athletic performance, I might add) could lead someone down the path to homosexuality.Overall, this movie is a masterpiece of its genre that is interesting, stimulating, and exciting for people of all persuasions.


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