Monday, August 31, 2009

California Shines on Schwarzenegger's...Muscles

Many years ago at a garage sale I unwittingly picked up a book about weightlifting titled, Pumping Iron: The Art and Sport of Bodybuilding. This was in the midst of my gym obsession days and I purchased the book thinking it would be a good frame of reference for my many workouts. I quickly lost interest in the ragtag paperback and stuffed it away in a box realizing that it wasn't a book about how to get strong. It was an outdated book about bodybuilders and their lifestyle.

I had all but forgotten that purchase until coming across an article recently about the 1975 Mr. Olympia contest and the accompanying documentary directed by George Butler and Robert Fiore called, Pumping Iron. I watched the movie and it blew me away. It features Lou Ferrigno, Mike Katz, Franco Columbu, Ed Corney, Ken Waller, and of course a very massive Arnold Schwarzenegger, as they all compete for the respective titles of Mr. World and Mr. Olympia. The movie single-handedly launched modern workout culture.

All that aside, it's an amazing time-capsule for the swingin' 1970s:

I also recommend the commentary track, Raw Iron: The Making of Pumping Iron.

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