The extraordinary TT3D: Closer to the Edge film had its Isle of Man premiere at the Palace Cinema in Douglas on Monday evening, leaving the star-studded audience awe-struck.
Produced by CinemaNX, the movie tells the story of the historic 2010 TT through the eyes of leading racing stars including Guy Martin, John McGuinness, Ian Hutchinson and Conor Cummins.
Those four were in the audience, along with Michael Dunlop, Keith Amor and Cameron Donald. The sidecars were also represented by TT legend Dave Molyneux, current TT star Tim Reeves and TT winner turned team boss Nick Crowe, who features in the film.
Also attending was Bridgett Dobbs, who features in the film as the tragic death of her racer husband Paul at Ballagarey is recounted.
Multiple Grand Prix World Champion Geoff Duke OBE, current MotoGP racer Cal Crutchlow, Enduro legend David Knight and rally champion David Higgins were also in the packed cinema.
The invitation-only event was the first time TT3D: Closer to the Edge had been screened in the Isle of Man and the reception was overwhelmingly positive, reflecting the critical acclaim the film has enjoyed so far.
Peter Duke was in the audience on Monday night, his second chance to enjoy the film after attending an earlier screening in London. His Isle of Man-based firm Duke has been involved in motorcycle films for 30 years, including the annual TT reviews, making him ideally placed to offer a view of this latest attempt to bring the event to the big screen.
Mr Duke said:
“I wasn't too sure what to expect from this new film. As has been proven many times in the past when a sports subject has been given the 'big-budget motion picture' treatment, the end result can, to varying extents, be patronising, over sensationalised, corny, dull, lacking in storyline or a combination of these flaws (as with Silver Dream Racer for example!).”
“I am delighted to report that TT3D: Closer to the Edge avoids all these pitfalls and, in my view, sets a new standard in motorsport film production. And best of all, it's a documentary that should appeal as much to a general audience as to the enthusiast.”
“It's got human interest galore with the UK's top bikesport personality, Guy Martin, in centre stage, giving his unique perspective on racing, risk and life in general - plus some amusing insights into how he passes his time away from the track.”
“The producers then use a supporting cast of John McGuinness, Ian Hutchinson and Conor Cummins, plus a wide cross-section of other people involved with the TT, to explain the enduring appeal of the world’s oldest and most challenging motorcycle event as they prepare for and then race at the 2010 TT.”
Mr Duke added:
“No punches are pulled as we see several dramatic examples of how the TT Mountain Circuit can exact a heavy toll for any error or misjudgement. One of the most moving scenes is with Bridget Dobbs, whose husband died at the 2010 TT. Her fortitude in explaining her late husband’s willingness to take on life-threatening risks is compelling and uplifting viewing.”
“From the rest of the cast there is also humour, camaraderie amongst rivals and a detailed insight into how the TT is attracting an increasing number of participants and spectators despite being - or maybe because it is - a complete anachronism in the modern world of ‘elf ‘n’ safety.”
“The cinematography, script, narration and soundtrack are all spot-on, with the 3D effects adding more to the experience for me during the paddock and slower shots than in race action.”
“Oh yes, the racing. Probably only 40% of the film is on-track action, and it all works brilliantly as the week builds up to an epic climax in the Senior Race. There are plenty of great action shots, but it’s the editing that turns the time-trial nature of the TT races into edge-of-seat battles.”
“Closer to The Edge could do for the TT and ‘real’ road racing what On Any Sunday did for off-road motorcycling in the 1970s and ‘80s.”
“It may be nine months at least before this is available on Blu-ray or DVD so make the best of the national screenings. You won’t be disappointed.”
TT3D: Closer to the Edge goes on general release on Friday. For more information, visit the official website