TT: Closer To The Edge
TT: Closer To The Edge was originally shot in 3D, and is one 3D film that I would have liked to have seen, in 3D, on the cinema screen. But alas, I only stumbled upon it when it was due for release on BluRay – of which you also get the 3D version, but that would require a 3D TV! The crisp clear visuals of the BluRay bring the documentary to life just fine though.
For those of you who don’t know what the two letters at the start of the title mean, I’ll tell you, but you have to promise me not to tune out when I tell you it’s about motorbike racing. The TT or Tourist Trophy is the legendary Island of Man annual motorbike race. It is the greatest motorbike road race in the world, and the most deadly. It has been running since 1907 and has so far seen 231 deaths and an even greater number of serious injuries.
The documentary attempts to follow a few riders as they prepare for the annual race, but one rider stands out from the crowd, the zany, self obsessed and totally lovable Guy Martin. Guy is a Lincolnshire truck mechanic by day, and an eternal optimist when it comes to the TT and his chances of winning. You have to love the guy for his massive heart and his ability to talk about strategy at the same time as talking about masturbating.
It’s Martin that takes TT from being a petrol-head only affair to something that most people will be able to enjoy.
For me, my interest was in the dangerous side of the race, and the sheer number of spectacular crashes that could be brought to life in HiDef BluRay quality. I wasn’t disappointed in this aspect, or in the general race footage, as the feeling of speed and racing on the edge comes to life in this brilliantly filmed documentary.
I also wasn’t disappointed that TT was about Guy as much as it was about racing. The guy (pun intended) is a charismatic charmer and an absolute dick head all at once. Deliberately breaking the minor rules and pushing boundaries, and having a good old sulk when things don’t go his way.
The documentary really excels though by allowing it to take it’s own course and tell it’s own story, rather than being forced down a particular track, this resulting in the aforementioned focus on Guy to the detriment of most everyone else. It is a little sad that we don’t get much more than just a passing comment on the only female rider, but this is a minot gripe.
TT is an exhilarating ride, one full of wonder, celebration, edge-of-your-seats action and emotion. It really is a human drama that will appeal to everyone and shouldn’t be overlooked just because it looks like a motor-sports doco.
Reviewed by: Jonathan Read