Archive for December, 2013

Bicycle Movies

Friday, December 20th, 2013

I recently received a screener copy of Stephen Auerbach’s Bicycle Movies. Bicycle Movies Volume 1 is a compilation of 22 bicycle themed short films from all over the world.

Many of the films in this collection are available on Youtube, so I had seen a few of them before. However, it was enjoyable to watch them all together in DVD format. The 22 films are:

The Man Who Lived On His Bike: I thought this movie was great. Making this movie must have been a lot of work, but at the same time, I’ll bet it was a lot of fun. After watching this movie, you’ll probably want to watch Guillaume Blanchet’s “Making of” video as well.

Love, Life, Bike: is a film by Ryan Van Duzer. Ryan Van Duzer claims to eat 3 to 5 burritos per day and likes to run races in his Scooby Doo outfit. I was a bit disappointed that this particular film didn’t feature any such hijinks. Ryan now hosts his own bicycle touring show on the Travel Channel. Here’s hoping he’ll break out the Scooby Doo outfit for one of those episodes.

Bike Thieves: by Toryn Westcott is a funny little piece with some amusing green screen moments. Toryn himself might have the funniest part when he appears on a scooter in the final scene.

Ironclad Racing Team: by Will Walle provides a glimpse into the world of the Ironclad Cycling Team. By presenting the team as a diverse cast of characters that share a unique bond through their experiences on and off the bike, this film succeeds in describing most cycling clubs and serves as inspiration for anyone to become more involved in their own communities.

Florida Ghost Bike: by Tony Blazejack explains the phenomenon of ghost bikes around the world, but focuses on the ghost bike and memorial ride for 44 year old Christophe Le Canne in Key Biscayne, Florida. It is a sad, but informative film.

Winter’s Edge: is a film by John Amunét, featuring poetry by his brother Samu Ainesmaa. John, is an avid winter cyclist from Finland. He got tired of hearing people claim they can’t ride in the winter. So he went out with a friend and shot this just to remind people that it doesn’t matter; sleet or rain or sunshine, the buzz and the feel of the ride is still there. Amen!

Dreams Of A BMX Rider: is a Red Bull MEDIA HOUSE production featuring Michael “Berry” Beran, the production values are impressive and the riding is beyond impressive.

Focal Point: by Bjorn Fisher presents a profile of mountain unicycling pioneer Kris Holm. The footage of Kris riding obstacles in downtown Vancouver and on the North Shore is amazing. Listening to Kris articulate his philosophy on life and riding nicely rounds out the film.

Right Hook: is a revenge fantasy by Mike Vogel. This movie was a bit extreme for my mild mannered sensibilities, but I’m still a fan of Mike’s work. Particularly his movie Doored – Fractured Skull, Broken Hearts.

Confessions Of A Pedalphile: SNL’s canteen boy went there, and so did the hilarious fourth season of Arrested Development, so why can’t Edward Valibus Phillips? Who am I to judge?

There’s A Flower In My Pedal: by Andrea Dorfman was runner up for best short at TIFF, 2005. It’s a poem accompanied by instrumental music and animation. It’s amazing!

Scrapertown: by Drea Cooper & Zackary Canepari is beautifully shot and edited and the story is inspiring. I appreciated Tyrone “Babye Champ” Stevenson’s philosophy behind Scraper bikes. This film came out in 2010 and it’s nice to see that Champ has been getting some recognition for his work since then. In 2011, he was named one of ten “GlobeChangers” by the Jefferson Awards for Public Service. Last winter, he was a customizer-in-residence at the Oakland Museum of California. To see some more recent scraper bikes footage, watch Scraper Bikes: “Bike 4 Life Ride”.

Fixie Boy: is a music video featuring Maya Dorn as MC Ladyfinger and the band Sweet Snacks. The song is quite catchy and the costumes in this video are hilarious.

How I Learned To Stop Worrying: by Winston Zirjacks is an examination of heckling in cyclo-cross and downhill races. The film, and the heckling that it portrays is clearly all in good fun.

A Bicycle Trip: by Lorenzo Veracini, Nandini Nambiar and Marco Avoletta is a beautifully animated film based on the true story of a bicycle ride taken in April, 1943 by Albert Hofmann the first person to synthesize, ingest, and learn of the psychedelic effects of LSD.

Performance: by Robin Moore exploded in August 2009 when Lance Armstrong tweeted about it. Since then, we’ve learned that not everything Lance said was the truth, but he wasn’t lying about this. It really is all about Performance! Robin Moore is now the co-founder of Plus M Productions which produced a great promo video for BikeSnobNYC‘s The Enlightened Cyclist.

Bikes In Columbia: by Joshua Rainwater is a film about the perils of cycling in Columbia, South Carolina. I appreciated how all the cyclists interviewed seemed to be representative of the majority of reasonable non adversarial community members just trying to get to where they’re going.

Villainous Heist: by Lukas Pecinka was shot in Alice Springs, Australia: a place I never would have guessed would have so many skilled unicyclists.

Bike Vs. Boyfriends: by Marin Tockman & Emily Demarest takes what might otherwise be a disposable top ten e-mail forward but bolsters it with a timelapse video featuring some cleverly drawn illustrations.

I Rode My Bicycle Through My Fears: by John Akre is a poem set to animation.

Local: Riders On The Storm: by Michalis Aristomenopoulos is a film about Local Athens, a group of people into cycling, their city and art.

No Handed Bike Moves: is a professional display of 50 No Handed Bike Moves, many of them are pretty clever.

Ontario to Louisiana Bicycle Trip

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

Having spent more than a month on the road, it’s been fun to pore over the video from our trip. In our travels from Southern Ontario to Southern Louisiana, we managed to cover most of the distance on dedicated bike paths or roadways such as the Natchez Trace which prohibits commercial traffic. Here’s a quick 7 minute compilation of highlights from the journey.

The notable trails we rode include:
Iron Horse Trail: Kitchener, Ontario
Grand Trunk Trail: Cambridge, Ontario
Cambridge to Paris Rail Trail: Cambridge and Paris, Ontario
SC Johnson Trail: Paris and Brantford, Ontario
Friendship Trail: Port Colborne and Fort Erie, Ontario
Western Reserve Greenway: Ashtabula to near Mosquito Lake State Park, Ohio
Portage Hike and Bike Trail: Ravenna to Kent, Ohio
Freedom Trail: Kent to Akron, Ohio
Ohio & Erie Canalway: Akron to Massillon
Holmes County Trail: Ohio
Mohican Valley Trail: Danville, Ohio
Kokosing Gap Trail: Danville to Mt. Vernon, Ohio
Ohio to Erie Trail: Ohio
Little Miami Scenic Trail: Springfield to Newtown, Ohio
Music City Greenway: Nashville, Tennessee
Natchez Trace Parkway: Nashville, Tennessee to Natchez, Mississippi

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