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Out Of Nothing (2017 VOD) Review

Out Of Nothing is a 2014 (2017 VOD) documentary about four tenacious men who risk everything to conquer the world records of motorcycle land speed racing.

By probably most every person who comes across it, land speed records, especially motorcycle land speed records, are one of those bits of news that get a cursory glance, a shrug of recognition, and then most likely forgotten. Like an obscure baseball stat, it’s something only a very few pay much attention too, a sport with barely any well-known heroes, and for all intents and purposes, zero fame. And yet, there are highly-dedicated enthusiasts who commit themselves to designing, crafting, and racing incredible two-wheel machines across one of the most desolate, beautiful landscapes on Earth, hungry to prove they are the fastest in the world. This is their story.

Chad DeRosa‘s Out Of Nothing is not what you expect, and while it has plenty of greasy, gearhead, down and dirty in-the-garage spectacle, with some truly astonishing looking bikes, this is far more about the highly-charismatic characters who build and race them. It centers on four men, friends and racing competitors who bicker and battle over the smallest of details to the biggest of issues as they work together to go very, very fast. They are brothers Mark Bjorklund and Carl Bjorklund, and Jason Omer and Bill Woods, each a specialist of sorts who have become masters of the trade, a dream team who are convinced that between them, they will break records on the salt flats of Bonneville, Utah where hundreds from around the world gather to test themselves on some of the fastest motorcycles ever built, all for New American Motorcycle Association glory.

The film spends the first third in the garage as we get to know these men and their machines, learning the lingo and terminology that prove crucial when the movie shifts to the race tracks, a huge swath of tended flats where the sky and sands come together in a gorgeous tapestry of blues and whites where men and women are equal when they don the leathers and mount their rides. What DeRosa does best is let these people propel the story on their own, and while it dedicates a lot of screen time to the four men, we meet dozens of riders, mechanics, and fans who make Out Of Nothing all the more compelling. It’s a rich community of enthusiasts who share and work together, support and praise all who take to the sands. It’s easy to see why it has such lure.

It’s pretty amazing how much tension is built around these individual time runs. And that’s because the film takes its time, carefully walking the viewer through the process and making clear the real objectives and rules, giving us a greater sense of knowledge and therefore investment in the races. From mechanical setbacks and bouts of bad weather, we easily fall into the dreams of these riders and it’s impossible not to be swept up in the humanity of it, celebrating the hurdles they overcame to do what they love.

You don’t need to be a racing fan or even a sports fan to appreciate what Out Of Nothing is showcasing, the drive in our species to push ourselves to limits that seem impossible. Earning a world record is more a personal achievement than a global one, despite the extreme efforts, and while there are no cheering crowds and endorsement deals, there is honor and value, even if these wins are fleeting. Out Of Nothing is a unique look at a small group of dedicated people and the challenging path they have chosen to ride.

Out Of Nothing releases on VOD October 3.

Out Of Nothing (2017 VOD) Review

Movie description: Out Of Nothing is a 2014 (2017 VOD) documentary about four tenacious men who risk everything to conquer the world records of motorcycle land speed racing.

Director(s): Chad DeRosa

Actor(s): Mark Bjorklund, Carl Bjorklund, Jason Omer

Genre: Documentary

  • Our Score
User Rating 4.12 (17 votes)
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