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Discussion Guide: Chariots Of Fire


Movie Synopsis

This inspirational film won four Academy Awards, taking top honors as Best Picture and the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Film. This classic look at the competitive spirit features two runners competing for Olympic glory in their own fashion and for their own separate reasons. The Oscar-winning score by Vangelis ("Blade Runner") perfectly complements the extraordinary performances and engaging story.

Chariots of Fire


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Discussion Questions

  1. What is symbolic about the title of the movie?

  2. How do you define success? After watching the movie, do you find your definition more like Eric Liddell’s or Harold Abrahams’s?

  3. In a scene in which Eric Liddell is speaking to a crowd, he compares running to faith stating, “From within, Jesus said, Behold, the kingdom of God is within you. If with all your hearts, you truly seek me, you shall ever find me. If you commit yourself to the love of Christ, then that is how you run a straight race”. What do you think is significant about Eric Liddell’s speech to the crowd? Why do you think he delivers this speech?

  4. Why do you think it is so hard for the Master of Trinity to accept the fact that Harold’s trainer, Mr. Mussabini, is a professional?

  5. Which philosophy do you think better complements Positive Coaching Alliance's mission to develop Better Athletes, Better People, Harold’s, or Master of Trinity’s?

What Parents Need To Know

Parents need to know that Chariots of Fire is a 1981 movie that tells the true story of British Olympic runners. It has very little mature content -- drinking and smoking mostly -- but may be too hard to follow for younger fans of sports movies. The two runners it features are worth discussing with kids, though. One runner is Jewish and fights prejudice through competition. The other is a Scottish missionary and refuses to run an Olympic race on Sunday, even when the Prince of Wales tries to appeal to his love of country. As a side note, a lone Lipton Tea billboard shows up along a racetrack -- a great reminder of just how littered with advertising most sporting events are today.

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Our partner, Positive Coaching Alliance, provides a collection of movie discussion guides, which aim to help you make the most out of movie viewing with your team or child. Movies provide many of "teachable moments" parents can share with their young athletes helping them be successful, contributing members of society.

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Track & Field