Personal Best (12A)

Sam Blair, 89mins

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The Independent Culture

Sam Blair's documentary, timed for the run-in to the Olympics, considers the prospects of four British sprinters.

Filmed over four years, it sets all the hard slog of training against those intense few moments of competition, when hundredths of a second can be the difference between winning and losing. "Hope isn't precise enough – it's too vague," says one scarily focused competitor, meaning: thorough preparation is the key.

Hope is what your friends and supporters do. The film-makers get a little carried away with the use of super-slo-mo and the looming close-ups beloved of sportswear ads – I would have preferred tougher questioning over all the heroic muscle power on offer. For those counting down the days to August, though, this is a useful taster.

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