The motorcycling film-maker who produced the entertaining Riding Solo to the Top of the World has produced another motorcycle adventure documentary called One Crazy Ride.
This time filmmaker Gaurav Jani invites a crew of his buddies from the “60 kph club” across the Himalayan state of Arunachal Pradesh in northeast India on some seriously overloaded Enfields. Unfortunately, One Crazy Ride lacks the direction and interest that Jani managed to create in Riding Solo.
There seems to be no real reason for including his riding buddies other than to have a bit of fun riding … with buddies. He tries to incorporate each character into the expedition but there’s either not enough time to really explore each of them or there’s not enough reason to. The result is that they detract rather than add to the actual expedition.
Add to this the fact that there is a lot of chatter in Hindi (though you can select English subtitles for the whole movie which is a help) and you have the feeling that you’re the other member of the 60 kph club that no-one wanted to invite or hang out with.
When the friends abandon Jani because they’ve seemingly had enough, Jani opts to complete the trek solo and as a result the film picks up once these distractions are jettisoned. Jani now ponders the people and obstacles ahead more freely and as a result we get back to the original charm of Riding Solo.
However, it’s too late to rescue the film, despite an edge of the chair crossing over a ramshackle narrow rope and plank suspension bridge. It’s one of those ‘giv’er’ moments that either gives you a grand tale to tell all for years to come or it all goes CMG and you make the back page of the local paper under the ‘amusing deaths’ notice.
Talking of death, as a final death knell all the friends reunite once again at the end of the film to finish the journey. At this point I was hoping that one or two may not actually make the bridge crossing in its entirety but alas it was all smiles and cheers on the other side.
After Riding Solo, One Crazy Ride is a disappointing follow up, but if Jani can find the confidence to get back to doing things sans others, then I’m sure we’ll see some more interesting stuff from this intrepid documentarian.
You can download a high-resolution trailer and even order a copy of One crazy Ride at dirttrackproductions.com (while you’re there, we do recommend checking out Jani’s first and far superior doc – Riding Solo to the Top of the World).