I love mountain bike films. Pink Bike and and Vimeo are my favourite TV channels these days and I can watch all day, bike packing adventure films, Red Bull funded free ride epics and 3 minute shredfests.
American production companies like the Season Collective and Anthill Films have delivered some of my favourites. These films take film crews to the hills and forests that you can imagine never having with you on a bike trip and the results are epic. Sweeping helicopter and drone captured footage bring a cinematic feel to these adventures in some of the worlds most stunning locations.
While these films look stunning and the riding is superb, I always have a small issue with them – I am never gonna ride those locations and I will never ride like that.
Enter stage left and Caldwell Visuals. Tom Caldwell has been delivering short edits of British riders on British soil for a while now, but last night I went to Mud Dock Cycle Works in Bristol and watched the premier of A Slice of British Pie.
With the help of DIRT Magazine and some of your favourite British riders (Ratboy, Brendan Fairclough, Phil Atwill) Tom has put together 30 mins of two wheeled fun and muddy shenanigans all filmed on British soil.
The film doesn’t come with the Hi Def gloss and slo mo of Where the Trail Ends, or the one the shot free ride segments of UnReal but what it does deliver is laughs and down and dirty shredding. If you’ve seen Not Bad (with Semenuk, McCaul etc), this is a British interpretation of that sort of fun and riding.
Tom Caldwell has created a more aspirational version of those US free ride movies. Filmed on trails up and down the UK where we could all ride – maybe not as fast and as railed as Danny Hart – but we could have a go and fall off a few more times!
In these days of drones and slo mo footage, Tom has set aside all the technological trappings available and filmed everything from ground level, in the ruts and at times under the tyres of the riders giving you often a worms eye view of the riding rather than the birds eye view that we are becoming accustomed to. It’s brilliant. It’s funny. And it’s British!
If you are not lucky enough to have got yourself a ticket to one of the 3 premier showings, you will have to wait until April. I can’t wait to watch again.
Meanwhile check out Tom Caldwell on Pink Bike or Facebook or check out the trailer for a tease of what to expect.