If Wheels Could Talk | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

If Wheels Could Talk

Teton Gravity Research shows its new mountain biking film in Bend

The trailer for "Esperanto," Teton Gravity Research's newest mountain bike film, concludes with the thought, "the language is something we use to communicate. It doesn't have to be composed of words." It's fitting for a film that is in multiple dialects and highlights the biking culture of around eight different countries and over 20 athletes from around the globe. 

If Wheels Could Talk
Courtesy Mark Behrendt
The universal language of bicycling is the star in this film that also features a Bend local.

The film's title derives from an attempt to create a universal language inspired by European languages. In 1887 a Polish-Jewish doctor named L.L. Zamenhof created the language in hopes that it would promote peace and connection across the globe. Although the language itself wasn't widely adopted it is a lasting philosophy that can be used to describe the universal languages in everyday life that don't use words, grammar or speech. 

In "Esperanto," biking is the common denominator, the language that doesn't have to be spoken. There is no hierarchy of elitism in the film. Commuting on a beat-up bike on a dusty road is given the same weight and importance as hucking down the biggest cliffs and sending it on narrow ladders 20 feet in the air. 

One special rider may receive a bit more emphasis at the Bend viewing, though. 

Bend local Carson Storch grew up shredding all the local hotspots in Central Oregon before exploding onto the professional scene in 2013 when he landed on the cover of "Bike Magazine." The 29-year-old is a young veteran in the free ride mountain biking scene, making the finals in some of the sport's biggest competitions like Red Bull Rampage and the Crankworx Freeride Dirt competition. Storch has appeared in countless films and edits, and is well primed to have a stellar role in "Esperanto." 

The film is different from traditional free ride films because individual segments for riders don't play out like a traditional video part. Most films focus on the individual's skill and abilities, featuring the heaviest-hitting tricks of the season without much regard to the other riders in the film. "Esperanto" aims to make sure each segment builds upon the film's concept of universality. Each part enhances the theme and builds cohesiveness throughout the run-time. 

Bend will be a part of the universal tour fabric, being one of 120 cities to show the film. Since the film's first premiere at Salt Lake on June 16 it has already made its way to Europe, Canada and mountain biking hotspots across the U.S. Midtown Ballroom will host the Bend viewings on Fri., July 15 with two showings. The early showing will be from 6-7:30pm with tickets starting at $15. The later show will be from 8:30-10pm with tickets going for $18. Tickets for children under 16 are $10. The film has no rating but is suitable for all audiences.


Fri., July 15. 6pm

Midtown Ballroom

51 NW Greenwood Ave.


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