Supercross The Movie Keep the $8.50 and I'll Keep My Dignity - Feature Review - Dirt Rider Magazine

That's what I told my Publisher, Sean Finley, when he said that if I wore all my gear to go see Supercross: The Movie, I could expense it. But the rest of the Dirt Rider crew proved a bit more brazen than I was. Following the inspiration of Chris Denison (resident new guy), and further coaxing of Finley, they all decided to dress in full gear and go see Supercross at The Grove in LA on its opening weekend. I came along (I had to witness this spectacle), but was defiantly dressed in jeans and a tank top.Friday night rolled around; I and a few others (also dressed in civvies) were waiting at the restaurant for the geared-up group to arrive. They were due in any minute, and as I scanned the parking lot looking for them, it occurred to me that they probably wouldn't be hard to spot.When they came around the corner, it was like an eclipse. All eight of them were dressed in shiny new gear (boots, gloves, the works). As they neared the building, we went outside to get pictures of their arrival. Joe McKimmy still had the tag on his new Answer boots and was even wearing a helmet, Jimmy was wearing a CamelBak as his "man-purse." Chris Denison and Tod Sciaqua had the most gusto, proudly displaying their names on their jerseys. We all laughed hysterically—most of all, at other people's expressions.We created a big scene with all the commotion and flashes going off. A big enough scene that once we sat down, our table was cluttered with kids asking for autographs. I don't know who they thought we were, or if they even cared. Apparently, all you need to do to be famous is wear motocross gear to a nice restaurant.Out of ten of us, Jimmy Lewis and his wife Heather, Chris Denison, Jesse Ziegler, Tod Sciaqua and his wife Cheryl, Adam Campbell and his wife Dana, Joe McKimmy and myself, only Dana and I weren't in gear. "See, now don't you feel out of place?" McKimmy asked me."Not even a little." I matter-of-factly replied as we left the restaurant for the theater (and I proceeded to pretend I didn't know them).Walking through The Grove on the way to the theatre was the funny part. If you're not familiar with The Grove, let me paint a picture for you. It's an outdoor shopping center in LA, just outside Beverly Hills with valet parking, four-star restaurants, expensive designer stores, fountains, etc. As we walked by people, the stares and comments coming from the uptown shoppers were priceless. "I think they're Power Rangers!" someone commented. Some Chinese tourists were pointing and laughing. How ridiculous do you have to look for that to happen? I guess we now know.As we approached the front of the line at the theatre, the ticket sales clerk had the night's winning one-liner. He said, "Let me guess; you're here to see Supercross? ...or 40-Year-Old Virgin." Good one. Especially coming from a guy dressed like one of the flying monkies from the Wizard of Oz.THE MOVIEGoing into this, we admittedly didn't have very high expectations. When you work in the industry that Hollywood is trying to depict, you can expect to walk away with some level of dissatisfaction (even if the movie is a hit with the general public). Although we didn't expect the details to be accurate or the plot to hold water, we were at least hoping to see some good action - especially since the footage came from actual AMA Supercross and Motocross races. With the rich color and glitz of a true Supercross race, it's hard to miss when it comes to photography. Still, they managed to do it. Miss, that is.The biggest disappointment from this movie (and that's saying a lot) was its overall poor quality. It's hard to fathom how the movie creators could go to the trouble to buy rights, mount cameras, pay stunt riders, etc... and then blow it all on such cheap quality. The footage from the "Supercross race" (which took place during the day, by the way) was completely washed out. Everything looked painfully grainy and "purplish," the lighting was non-existent, and the helmet cam footage was astoundingly awful—blurry and cloudy—not that you could even tell in the one-second clips they flashed. Even at the Las Vegas Supercross at the end of the movie (which was at least at night), the color was still terrible and unbalanced.What else was bad about this movie? Name it. The plot was outlandish (which we actually expected). Two desert rat brothers decide to enter a Supermoto race for some extra cash and are "spotted" by a factory team looking for a new rider. They watch the older brother spin a few laps and then promptly offer him a full factory ride for Motocross and Supercross. The younger "wild card" brother goes on to land a privateer ride and the two end up going head to head. We might have even been able to live with the plot if it was developed enough and left out a few outlandish stunts.The story moved very fast, at a children's television show pace, never stopping long enough to focus on anything. That characteristic might have made the movie suitable for kids, but the language and randy love scenes eliminate that possibility. This movie tries to take itself way too seriously, and the content to back up the desperately dramatic tone just isn't there.As industry insiders, there were obviously stunts and details that we scoffed at, that the average viewer might not catch. Again, we anticipated that before even sitting down. But some things in the movie were downright laughable. The sounds of the bikes were embellished with animal noises (I'm not lying)! When the bikes would come into a turn, the motor-sound turned into a big cat growl. The "big crash" scene wasn't very convincing. It was real—I have to hand it to the stunt men because you can't fake a crash like that—but the guy takes off fine, and then just ditches the bike in mid air. But I think my favorite part is when a CR250 loses to a Harley Davidson in a drag race. Yes, that's right. A CR250 gets yanked by a Harley with a dresser drawer knob as some kind of booster shifting device.Real life Supercross bad boy Tyler "One Punch" Evans played the adversary as the tattooed tough guy on the track. He may have been the best actor in the film, with lines like, "You'd better watch your back out there!" Best Actor in a Supporting Role definitely goes to David Pingree as Evans' hardcore sidekick. I heard Frankie Muniz wasn't available for the "intimidating tough guy" role, so Pingree filled in at the last minute. Way to step up, Ping!We were hoping, at the least, to see an awesomely bad movie and get a kick out of the pro motocrosser cameos. But the movie was so utterly disappointing in all respects, it took the wind completely out of our sails as we left the theater. How do you go that wrong with something as exciting, dramatic and colorful as Supercross?I suppose on the brighter side of things, we can say that our sport is beginning to step into the mainstream. At least it was a stab at taking a serious look into the world of Supercross. But is a movie this bad worse than nothing at all?Until Oliver Stone takes an interest and does for motocross what "Any Given Sunday" did for pro football, we'll have to suffer through movies where chimpanzees win Supercross titles, and she-spies hunt down bad guys while doing back flips. We can only hope that some day we'll step into the mainstream and be taken seriously at the same time.

The crew settling down for dinner.
But it wasn't long before kids began approaching us for autographs.
Jesse Ziegler (left) and Chris Denison (right) entertaining their fans.