You Won't Need Running Shoes, Darling | Chicago Reader

You Won't Need Running Shoes, Darling

Dorothy Todd Henaut's 1997 video portrait of her octogenarian parents living in bucolic Canada ranges from sweet to tedious, frequently crossing the line between personal filmmaking and sheer self-indulgence. It begins with a haunting meditation on aging and the adjustments one makes as the body wears out, but rather than address these moody, philosophical issues the video turns into a home movie, with long sequences of Henaut's parents mulching the garden, crushing cans for recycling, and arguing about household chores. Eventually catastrophic diseases intervene, but the health crises are so flatly and amateurishly filmed that all the drama and import are drained away. Even worse is the sappy, educational-film music; serious at some points, bouncy at others, it recalls nothing so much as a Disney nature documentary. 53 min.

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