Runner Stumbles
Runner Stumbles (1979)

Director Stanley Kramer ended his career with this absorbing drama, adapted from the play by Milan Stitt and based on a real-life event from 1927. Dick Van Dyke stars as Father Rivard, an intellectual priest in a small, impoverished mining… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: December 13, 1990
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Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
44%
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User Score
100%


Critic Score: 44% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Variety Staff
Variety

Throughout, the film is paced by fine performances, especially Van Dyke as Father Rivard, Quinlan as Sister Rita and Maureen Stapleton as Van Dyke's housekeeper.

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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

In its relentlessly old-fashioned way, The Runner Stumbles has a sort of dramatic persistence: It's not great, but it's there.

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Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice

The Runner Stumbles is an exceptionally fine film about the exigencies of a religious calling and a critique of the legalism within Christianity.

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Time Out

Deadly earnestness over Van Dyke's tortured celibacy becomes risible long before the Perry Mason conclusion and a final scene of indescribable bathos.

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Phil Hall
Film Snobbery

A compelling and memorable drama, via Stanley Kramer.

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Janet Maslin
New York Times

Mr. Van Dyke's performance, though extremely sympathetic, is hard to assess. He worries and suffers, but the film finds nothing vital in his ordeal.

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TV Guide's Movie Guide

The main problem with the film is that inherent to most play adaptations: it's too talky and static, with most of the responsibility for story development left to explanatory dialog.

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