Have you ever known? I mean really really known, on some sort of a gut level precognition that you would really really hate something? I have, and do you know what it is? No? Ok I'll tell you, bicycle racing! Yeah, I love to bike around, and I love to work at it and ride fast, but the way bicycle racing is set up I just know I would hate it.
Domestiques, the poor dudes who kill themselves pulling the line so the fat cats can sprint the finish, not for me! And what does it prove anyway? Well the movie Hard Road is about just that. It takes a documentary vantage point following around a team called NetZero as they compete in criterium and other road racing events around this country. It does nothing to tell me that my distaste for team bicycle racing is wrong.
Although I do not think the movie set out to depict this, it does a terrific job of showing a bunch of bikers who dedicate their year to developing a team and racing in the pro circuit. One of the dudes is a "star" from Australia I think. Well anyway, what we see for the rest of the movie is the team sitting around their crummy motel rooms determining just what excuses the team had for not winning, and listening to the star complain about, 'had he had just a little more help' how he could have won. Well, if he needed and used that "HELP." How could he claim the win? I guess it's like clipless pedals that you clip into. It's a bike thing. Lets see, You win if you have help, but you lose because you didn't have help, but the victory is yours, but the blame is theirs? Ok great value system here!
The movie is well shot and visually interesting for a bicyclist, but the race footage is spotty and difficult to follow in conjunction with the race commentary. It seemed to me they merely did voice overs on top of general shots of the races. But it sure is pretty! I enjoyed the movie, but I suspect it may not have been for the same reasons that it was produced. I just enjoyed the scenery, the bike riding scenes, the efforts of the guys as they trained. I could have totally done without the whining, and oh yeah, not to give it away, but the team does not get rehired next year. No duh?