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Big Rig 2007
Description: A portrait of contemporary American life, as seen through the eyes of long-haul truck drivers.
Released: 03 Jun 2008 Director: Doug Pray Writers: Brad Blondheim, Doug Pray Actors: N/A Genres: Documentary
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Big Rig Reviews:

This film is a nice idea and brings us some nice stories and personalities. It's educational and fun to ride with the truckers featured here. Unfortunately, the filmmaker doesn't seem to believe them to create an exciting movie by themselves, and so there is near-schizophrenic cutting throughout (the average shot is probably about 3 seconds) and an overpowering amount of melody to accompany each moment. It's also shot like an extended episode of Street Rules, with countless montages of street signs and scenery backed by aforementioned beat-heavy rock. I think the film would now be half as long if you took out these interludes. Which is a shame, because based on the amount of street footage the movie includes, the filmmakers gotta have spent quite awhile on the road, and have got to have many more interview reels with truckers than they place in the final version. Since the filmmaker himself doesn't have much to tell beyond the fact that truckers are nice folks and trucks are important, it's too terrible that he didn't allow the truckers tell more themselves.


Large Rig screened this week at the SXSW Movie Festival in Austin, TX where it was very well-received. Large Rig is an entertaining and very personnel look at truckers that attempts to counter the many negative stereotypes that Americans have about truckers. The movie acts to humanize this group that most Americans know tiny about. The cinematography of the American landscape as viewed from trucks driving across America is quite beautiful. This is backed up by an entertaining soundtrack. The truckers interviewed are often quirky characters who come off as much smarter and reflective than most of us would expect.In the film, we see a nice tons of truckers of various backgrounds, races, personalities, ages, and politics. The movie also contains few female truckers and talks about the difficulties that they face in a male-dominated world. The focus is mostly on who the truckers are, why they do what they do, and the difficulties that they face (rising gas prices, time away from their families, government regulation, etc.). The movie also tries to present us how crucial and under-appreciated the role of trucking is in our national economy.The only true weakness is that by only saying the storyline entirely from the truckers' perspective, they deliever a portrait that is almost entirely sympathetic and essentially uncritical. They never speak to any consumer advocates or critics of trucking industry, for example. They don't discuss many of the issues that truckers cause for the roads, another motorists, or the environment. They don't really discover much about trucking industry and its faults. The view is more private and in this situation that's mostly a positive. The movie is charming and scenic view of an under-appreciated American subculture that is in many methods the unseen backbone of much of the American economy.


I have to admit that I was very impressed with the film. While I wasn't too concerned about the current movie making aspect of it, I was paying close attention to the reality and feature of what the movie was presenting to the viewers (after all it was a documentary). The topics matter that was presented was great, and the choice of drivers in the movie was very diverse and a very true portal to some of the characters one would meet at any truck stop, anywhere, on any day in the US.The movie may be scattered somewhat jumping from driver to driver, and it never really gives an concept of what happens or where the folks end up at the end of the film. It's more of a snapshot of the everyday life of the truck driver, and relies more on stories about how they got to that mission in their lives and contains some street stories from the past. It barely touches the surface of the current everyday struggles of a truck driver, but it's done in a great neutral method that doesn't test to sway the viewer. Some drivers are likable, some are not. The case throughout the movie "is what it is".If you've ever been curious about who those drivers are in those large trucks sharing the street with you, this film is a very nice zone to begin and receive an idea.



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