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I hadn't seen "Marathon Man" since I was in high school - given my filtered memory, I'm surprised at how slow the film starts off, but once it builds (about one-third or one-half way through), it builds quickly and relentlessly. It's a fiendishly fun thriller that will make you wince, pity, fear, and cheer, all with unresolved questions at the end, but you may be surprised at how slowly the film begins. An obvious repeated theme in this film is pain, and the ability to "run through it," and the marathon motif is no MacGuffin - it's highly symbolic of the horrors which are coming. Speaking of MacGuffins, I've started working my way through "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" whose thread you'll find in that link - I hope people see an episode they remember, and feel free to discuss it, as with all the old TV series that I've gone through - it has been, and continues to be, my hope that our members will find this to be a fun place to discuss their old favorites, right down to the sub-atomic level of detail - same goes with all these old films I've been joyfully revisiting. One of my goals with this website is to get some of my knowledge down on paper for future generations, so they don't have to learn it all over again. Although there's no "knowledge" in this little essay, I hope it at least gives you a stroll down memory lane - who knows? Maybe it will inspire some of you to watch the film again, decades later. My only regret is that our human lifespan isn't 250 years so I could do everything I'd like to do, but if it was 250 years, I'd wish it were a thousand, and if it were a thousand, I'd wish it were a million (unless, of course, I was in "The Escape Clause," - "The Twilight Zone," Season 1, Episode 6, co-starring none other than the first Latino ever to be nominated for an Academy Award, Thomas Gomez). There's a humorous, famous, and somewhat legendary story about an interplay between Dustin Hoffman and Sir Lawrence Olivier about "Why don't you just try acting?" that's worth reading about. It is nearly disturbing how much I find William Devane to resemble Jack Nicholson in this film. I cannot possibly be the only one who has noticed this - if Jack Nicholson and Robert F. Kennedy had had a baby, it would have been William Devane. The other two supporting roles, played by Roy Scheider and Marthe Keller completes the billing of quite a talented cast, with even more character actors who played their roles very well - the cast may have been this film's biggest overall strength, or number two just behind the unrelenting suspense which lasts for over an hour.