What is it about mountain biking and documentaries that make them such a good fit? Perhaps it’s because mountain biking is so real to us and we can spot mountain bike fakers from a mile away (can you imagine Tom Hanks playing a downhill racer in a major motion picture?). Or perhaps it’s because mountain bikers feel misunderstood by the outside world. Whatever it is, the documentary film seems to be the media of choice for describing the mountain bike world and I thought I’d share an incomplete list of some recent MTB documentary films. Let me know if I’ve left any off this list.
24 Solo: I know, I know, I keep talking about this film but it really tells a great story. 24 Solo really does a good job personalizing mountain biking while at the same time the film remains accessible to folks outside the sport.
Off Road to Athens: From the director of 24 Solo, Off Road to Athens was actually produced first. This is a good story as well, though it lacks some of the emotion seen in other MTB documentaries.
Klunkerz: I haven’t seen this one but from what I understand this film offers a historical perspective on mountain biking.
Remember2Breathe: I read about this film in the Daily Record but I really don’t know much about it. Apparently it was done by a high school student and offers a glimpse into the MTB racing scene.
The Way Bobby Sees It: Poison Oak Productions’ latest documentary follows Bobby McMullen and his quest to race in the Downieville Downhill. This is at least the second MTB documentary for Poison Oak Productions; the first, Singletrack MINDS, was a short film about the conflict between trail users in Marin County, CA.
Of course other MTB films like the Collective series are essentially documentaries since they follow real riders doing real stunts but they often lack a story line and in-depth interviews like the films mentioned above. Which MTB film is your favorite?