Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Movie Review: The Collective

I've been wanting to get some mountain bike movies just to have on when I'm doing intervals on the trainer. I've been watching the same Tour De France footage for the past two years. I also have Off Road the Athens, the Hard Road and Pro The Movie. but I wanted something different along the lines of free riding and downhilling, mainly to just watch these guys positioning and just get into that mode of thought a little. To go along with my skills work.

I also wanted something that wasn't a lot of that loud Korn, Nickel Back music that seems so popular with the Rock radio stations and Ya Brah! Crowd. I saw the Collective suggested as a good visual movie with a good soundtrack with more riding than drunk punks screwing around.

Feed the Habit reviewed it as well as Single Track World

It's funny. This kind of riding is so far removed from what I do. The speeds and height, and drops are just beyond what I can imagine. Yet at the same time the essential movements and technique that these pro free riders/downhillers utilize can be applieid to XC. Little things, like how they don't just let gravity pull them passively down the hill, but how they attack it. Pedaling out of turns working the bike and the terrain.

Or how they just flow and let the bike move underneath them is fascinating.

This movie is good. The cinematography is spectacular. The music is great. Rather than in your face, it draws you in. And the riding is amazing. Ryan Leech displays some phenomenal grace, and the others show why they are the kings of the mountain bike world right now. There is no swearing (except in the music a little) or drinking partying, etc. Just sweet riding.

Like I said, most of the riding I'd never even attempt. But there is some single track that anyone could do to their ability. These guys just do it better.

One thing was interesting how they set their bodies/bikes up on some turns. It looked like they were squatting (sitting) down with their butts to the outside of the turn. I would expect them to push the bike down and lean to the outside more with their upperbody. These turns were more gradual turns and not banked, so I'm wondering if this technique helped them to keep from drifting too much. Or maybe they were putting their hips into it more which makes it look like they were sitting into the outside of the turn.

One skill that can be taken down to my level was the jump turn. These guys were skying big jumps and gaps and turning in midair in order to land in a turn. I've tried this a few times on some small turns on my local trails. Though we are talking 3" of air as opposed to 15'. A small unweight, and turn the rear wheel in the air to land facing the perfect direction.


At 10:17 AM, Blogger Keith said...

I just rented "Disorder II: Fat Tire Fury: White Knuckle Extreme" (wow, long title). I think you might like it. There's basically no dialog and the movie is basically all riding. It's mostly downhill footage (some from races, some not). There's also a cool off-road unicycle segment and a cool trials-type riding segment.
There's only one segment that focuses on hucking off stuff (which doesn't do much for me). In my book, if you've got to smack yourself in the head a few times before you do something, it's probably not something you should be doing.



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