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Rise Above: overcoming personal trauma

"Rise Above" is an inspiring documentary showcasing the power of the human spirit to overcome adversity through physical endurance and mental resilience.

Keywords: Endurance athlete, Damien Rider, personal challenges, inspiration, Route 66, skateboarding, running, paddling, overcoming trauma, Phuket, physical strength, mental resilience, motivation. Three words: Inspiring, Resilient, Challenging


The documentary "Rise Above" is directed by Paul Gorman, and was released in 2019. The film follows the life and journey of endurance athlete Damien Rider, as he paddles, runs, and skateboards his way across challenging terrains, overcoming personal trauma while inspiring others.


"Rise Above" tells the story of Damien Rider, an Australian endurance athlete who pushes his limits in physical strength and mental resilience. The film documents Rider's feats as he paddles and runs non-stop around Phuket, Thailand, and skateboards Route 66, conquering personal challenges and traumas while inspiring many others to rise above their own difficulties.

More Film Analysis


"Rise Above" adopts a raw and intimate style, providing an in-depth exploration of Rider's personal journey. The film showcases the depth of Rider's determination, resilience, and the power of the human spirit to rise above adversity.

Historical and Factual Context

Damien Rider grew up in a turbulent and abusive environment, which he channeled into becoming an endurance athlete. His journey offers an inspiring story of overcoming childhood trauma through sport and determination.

Key themes in the film

  • Overcoming personal trauma
  • Resilience and determination
  • Physical and mental strength
  • Empowerment and inspiration

Film Comparisons

"Rise Above" can be compared to documentaries such as "Free Solo" and "The Dawn Wall", which also focus on individuals pushing their limits in physical endurance and mental resilience, while overcoming internal and external challenges.

Noteworthy Moments

One of the significant moments in the documentary is when Rider completes his non-stop run around Phuket, demonstrating his exceptional physical endurance and determination to rise above personal challenges.


"Rise Above" has been well-received by audiences for its inspiring narrative and raw portrayal of Rider's journey. Specific review quotes are not available at this time.


"Rise Above" is an inspiring documentary that showcases the power of the human spirit to overcome adversity. It is particularly enlightening for those interested in endurance sports, personal growth, and mental health.

More film information:


  • Genre: Documentary



  • Damien Rider: The endurance athlete who is the main subject of the documentary



  • Phuket, Thailand
  • Route 66, USA

Key Questions Raised by the Film:

  • How does physical endurance help in overcoming personal trauma?
  • What role does mental resilience play in challenging physical feats?
  • How can personal struggles inspire others?

I wonder what the film would be in another art form

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  1. If this film was a famous book, it would be "The Power of One" by Bryce Courtenay because of its theme of overcoming adversity.
  2. If this film was a famous song, it would be "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor, representing the struggle and determination.
  3. If this film was a famous piece of art, it would be "The Persistence of Memory" by Salvador Dali, symbolizing endurance and persistence.
  4. If this film was a famous celebrity, it would be Lance Armstrong, representing physical endurance and overcoming adversity.
  5. If this film was a color, it would be red, symbolizing strength and determination.
  6. If this film was a music style, it would be Rock, representing strength and resilience.