Tom Cruise was enthusiastic about playing track phenom Steve Prefontaine until he read the script and decided he was too old for the part. Perhaps it is better that he didn't take the role; his all-American charm and charisma would not capture the headstrong recklessness of the Olympic runner. Crudup's portrayal is right on target and will likely make him a star. The biopic observes the relationship between Pre and his University of Oregon coach Bill Bowerman (Sutherland), who would go on to invent the Nike running shoe. An intelligent look at a man's will to test the limits of the human spirit. An outstanding comeback for Towne.
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