100 Years of Olympic Films: 1912–2012

100 Years of Olympic Films: 1912–2012

54 Episodes

Spanning fifty-three movies and forty-one editions of the Olympic Games, 100 YEARS OF OLYMPIC FILMS: 1912–2012 is the culmination of a massive, award-winning archival project encompassing dozens of restorations by the International Olympic Committee. The documentaries collected here cast a cinematic eye on some of the most iconic moments in the history of modern sports, spotlighting athletes who embody the Olympic motto of “Faster, Higher, Stronger”: Jesse Owens shattering world records on the track in 1936 Berlin, Jean-Claude Killy dominating the Grenoble slopes in 1968, Joan Benoit breaking away to win the Games’ first women’s marathon in Los Angeles in 1984. In addition to the impressive ten-feature contribution of Bud Greenspan, this stirring collective chronicle of triumph and defeat includes such documentary landmarks as Leni Riefenstahl’s OLYMPIA and Kon Ichikawa’s TOKYO OLYMPIAD, along with captivating lesser-known works by major directors like Claude Lelouch, Carlos Saura, and Miloš Forman. It also offers a fascinating glimpse of the development of film itself, and of the technological progress that has brought viewers ever closer to the action. Traversing continents and decades, reflecting the social, cultural, and political changes that have shaped our recent history, this remarkable movie marathon showcases a hundred years of human endeavor.

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100 Years of Olympic Films: 1912–2012
  • Salt Lake City 2002: Bud Greenspan’s Stories of Olympic Glory

    Episode 1

    Directed by Bud Greenspan • 2003 • United States

    With his documentary on XIX Olympic Winter Games Salt Lake City 2002, Bud Greenspan shows that the Olympic Games set the bar to such a near-mythical level that winning or losing a medal can arouse emotions far beyond those in other competitions.

  • Bud Greenspan’s Athens 2004: Stories of Olympic Glory

    Episode 2

    Directed by Bud Greenspan • 2005 • United States

    For his documentary on the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad in Athens, Bud Greenspan decided to take a more selective approach, focusing only on five other disciplines and sports apart from the staple track and field: swimming, softball, fencing, cycl...

  • Bud Greenspan’s Torino 2006: Stories of Olympic Glory

    Episode 3

    Directed by Bud Greenspan • 2007 • United States

    In addition to covering the XX Olympic Winter Games of 2006 in Turin, Bud Greenspan’s documentary offers an excellent introduction to Turin's significance in history, art, and commerce. Faithful to his habit, the director fleshes out coverage of t...

  • The Everlasting Flame

    Episode 4

    Directed by Gu Jun • 2010 • China

    Gu Jun's film for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad Beijing 2008 strikes an adroit balance between the intimate and the spectacular. Gu starts by flitting between various places around the world where individual athletes are training and captures director Zhang Yim...

  • Bud Greenspan Presents Vancouver 2010: Stories of Olympic Glory

    Episode 5

    Directed by Bud Greenspan and Nancy Beffa • 2010 • United States

    This chronicle of the XXI Olympic Winter Games Vancouver 2010 would be Bud Greenspan’s last before his death in 2010. His time-honored approach to these films was by this point familiar, and here he brings a valedictory flourish to...

  • First

    Episode 6

    Directed by Caroline Rowland • 2012 • United Kingdom

    Caroline Rowland's FIRST is influenced by Bud Greenspan's method of profiling selected competitors in depth and continuing with an account of how they performed at the Games, often in their own words. Rowland's twist is that she chooses all fi...