Starring Nicolas Cage (Leaving Las Vegas), Sarah Paulson (12 Years a Slave), Connie Nielsen (Gladiator), Peter Fonda (Easy Rider), Wendell Pierce (The Wire) and Bryan Batt (Mad Men), “The Runner” is a political drama film by Austin Stark that is set in the aftermath of the 2010 BP oil spill.
Colin Pryce (Nicolas Cage) is an idealistic but flawed politician who is forced to confront his dysfunctional life after his career is destroyed in a sex scandal. The unknown congressman from New Orleans sees his political career sky rocket after the wake of the catastrophic 2010 BP oil spill, where after an emotional testimony before Congress about the impact on local fishermen and tourist business he becomes a favorable political candidate. His success however, is not reflected in his personal life.
When Colin reconnects with his former PR advisor Kate Haber (Sarah Paulson) he becomes open to the possibility again of a new, more fulfilling life, but when he receives the devastating news that his father (Peter Fonda) – a disgraced politician himself – is dying, he is forced to confront his troubled past.
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“The Runner” is about a mans hunger to become a great leader without sacrificing his beliefs. Set in the backdrop of the BP oil spill, the damaged stricken Southern Louisiana could be considered as a metaphor for the life Colin Pryce is forced to rebuild. As the story unfolds, it provides commentary on the spill, while exploring themes we can relate to: the nuclear family, the institution of marriage, and the contemporary American Dream.