- Anti Gravity 2
- £15.99 (DVD)
- Mountain Biking UK
Anti Gravity 2 is the second film from Reflex Films – you can probably guess what the first one was. The first Anti Gravity was helped along by Mountain Biking UK magazine, and that connection is stronger for the sequel – Anti Gravity 2 was “produced by Reflex Films on behalf of MBUK” and is available exclusively from the magazine itself.
So what are you getting? We’ll start with what you’re not getting – there’s no ludicrously huge freeride craziness of the sort that you’ll be used to from franchises like NWD, with the exception of an Adidas Slopestyle segment (which you may have already seen). What you do get is a load of British riders from various fields riding for the hell of it – there’s bits of race footage in there, like the big Fort William section, but this isn’t about racing.
Like MBUK itself, AG2 is simultaneously varied and, um, not varied. Which is to say that there’s quite a lot of variety within fairly close boundaries – we’re talking lots of (off-duty) downhill and dirt jumping and a fair bit of trials and street stuff. There’s no particularly surprising names on the roster – Steve Peat, Dave Wardell, Will Longden, Marc Beaumont, various Athertons, Neil Donoghue, Grant Fielder and so on. There’s plenty of good riding and entertaining stuff, but it’s all quite mellow – there’s not a great deal to make your jaw drop, although lots to make you smile and nod appreciatively.
Like the first film, large parts of AG2 were shot at magazine photoshoots, and like the first film this has mixed results. Inevitably a lot of the time there’s a photographer standing in a really good place to film from, so the video camera has to go somewhere else. And the inherently highly repetitive nature of photoshoots seems to us to translate itself perhaps a little too directly on to film – there’s only so many times you can watch different riders going round the same corner.
There’s only really a few bits that stick out like that, though, and there’s some cool stuff in there. We rather liked “Brendan Fairclough’s Backyard Jam” in which various off-duty downhillers ride the jumps and trails in the eponymous garden, which comes complete with benches, shed and gnomes. It rather brings home how achingly middle-class UK mountain biking is, but still.
As befits the laid-back style, the soundtrack is generally fairly relaxed, which we’ll take over wall-to-wall metal any day of the week. You’re getting 63 minutes of stuff, which includes footage of the 2005 DH Nationals and the (perhaps inessential) 2005 MBUK covers gallery and “Behind The Scenes at MBUK” extra sections. Actually the latter was quite amusing, although how amusing it is if you don’t know the people involved we have no idea.