by Isabella Cannuscio
Last week, the movie RISE premiered in theaters all over the country. If you didn’t already know, RISE is a documentary commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1961 U.S. World Figure Skating Team that perished on its way to the World Championships. On that plane, not only were there figure skaters, but family members and officials as well. Like the other 4597458 figure skaters who went to see this nationwide event, I was among them.
Going into RISE I had a few ideas of what it would be like, and honestly it exceeded all of what I thought it would be. I knew it would be heartbreaking and a definite tearjerker, but I never thought it would be as inspiring as it ended up being. Figure skating wouldn’t be the way it is today without this tragedy happening. So many people (Olympians included) are funded by the memorial fund, and have been able to keep skating because of this.
Around 7:30, when the pre-show started, the theatre filled up pretty fast, which was of course when I realized I had to use the restroom. I was gone for no more than 3 minutes, and when I came back I was told that the Champs Camp photo that Ian and I were in from last year, was on the slideshow. My biggest claim to fame to this day and I missed it. =/
I actually enjoyed the pre-show slideshow very much – it had little tidbits of information on big name skaters. As much as I’d like not to admit, I don’t really know much about the history of figure skating and the accomplishments of the major stars of our sport, which was going to become more apparent for me while I watched RISE.
I loved seeing all the old clips of these skaters and the pure talent they all had. I can now put a face with a name and know how much of a great skater that person was. Seeing the skaters perform showed me how far skating has come, and yet they all had such ease to their skating that I wish I could achieve. After seeing this movie I basically wanted to go out and skate as soon as I left….but then I realized I’m not THAT crazy ;). But truthfully, it was the most inspiring thing about figure skating I have ever seen, and the most inspired I have ever felt while in this sport.
If you don’t follow me on Twitter or are my Facebook friend, then I understand if you didn’t see the premier on the count that you didn’t read all my threatening status updates and tweets about getting tickets… but since I’ve had a chance to connect to a few more people through this blog, PLEASE go see it on the encore showing March 7th! It is a great film that was beautifully directed and told, and will give you a new perspective on figure skating.