Film Festival Rolls in on Two Wheels

London did not make USA Today’s “10 Great Places for City Cycling” list this July. But the city did earn a top-20 mention in a more European-focused Danish report on the best bicycle-friendly cities. Combined with local efforts to promote cycling in anticipation of the upcoming 2012 Olympics, some would argue that London’s cycling credentials are on the rise.

It’s fitting, then, that the annual Bicycle Film Festival makes its return to London, Oct. 5 to 9, in various locations around the city (screenings primarily take place at the Barbican Center).

The festival, which was founded in 2001 by Brendt Barbur, after he was hit by a bus while cycling in New York City, aims to celebrate different facets of cycling culture through film, music and art. The festival now travels to more than two dozen cities internationally.

On Oct. 9, the festival will highlight cycling films made by women, about women. “Cycling, filmmaking and art are all dominated by men,” Mr. Barbur said. “This year we have a lot more content produced and directed by women, about women. I recognized that women are gaining a voice in cycling, and we are elated to be able to provide a platform for this.”

The festival will feature a short film by the acclaimed American director Spike Jonze called “Mark on Allen,” featuring the skateboarder Mark Gonzalez. In collaboration with the Barbican’s Silent Film Club, the festival will include a screening of “Wheels of Chance,” a British film from 1922, set to a live piano score.

Those looking for a bit more action should check out the roller racing event on Oct. 6, the bike messenger race on Oct. 8, and the bike polo tournament on Oct. 9.

“The main shift in cycling at this point is that it is becoming more mainstream around the world,” Mr. Barbur said. “It is one of the most positive moments of the past decades, and can only grow from here.”

The full story is at the NEW YORK TIMES.

Photo: The film “Bikelordz,” by Mikey Hart, part of the Bicycle Film Festival in London, follows young BMX bikers in Accra, Ghana. Image courtesy of the Bicycle Film Festival

Leave a Reply