Requiem for a Running Back

Feature Documentary / Director: Rebecca Carpenter / Prod: You Gotta Love


Director Rebecca Carpenter’s father, Lewis Carpenter, was a World Championship running back for the Detroit Lions and Vince Lombardi’s Green Bay Packers. When he dies, her family receives a surprise request from Boston University’s brain bank – with shocking results. Lew becomes the 18th NFL player diagnosed postmortem with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative neurocognitive disorder that can cause episodes of rage, social withdrawal, and other unusual behaviors. In disbelief, Carpenter finds herself at ground zero of an unfolding public health controversy and embarks on a three-year odyssey across America to explore the far-reaching implications of this “new” disease.

"The PBS “Frontline” documentary “League of Denial,” the Will Smith drama “Concussion” and books such as “Counting the Days While My Mind Slips Away” preceded Rebecca Carpenter’s “Requiem for a Running Back” — but Carpenter’s ★★★★ film might be the most searing, most powerful, most personal and most unforgettable take on this most American of tragedies." Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun Times

Press: Chicago Sun Times / Village Voice / NY POST