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Ewan McGregor And Charley Boorman - Long Way Round [Special Edition] [DVD] 
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Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman travel 20,000 miles around the world on motorbikes. The pair left London on 14th April 2004 and travelled through Europe, Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Siberia, Alaska and Canada before arriving in New York on 29th July.
Long Way Round is a documentary detailing the 20,000-mile motorcycle trip Ewan McGregor took around the world with best friend Charley Boorman over 115 days. Their trip took them from London through locales such as Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Siberia, and Canada, to name a few, before ending in New York.
Armed with a cameraman, McGregor and Boorman encounter separation anxiety from their families; a shifty stranger (later revealed to be Mafia) who leads them through winding dark corridors to a posh hotel room; delays at international borders; hosts who offer them animal parts for dinner; injuries, equipment breakdowns, and more.
The pair also film their own video diaries, in which they voice concerns and frustrations. The result is an emotional, rich breadth of experiences, from the hardship of logistical setbacks paired with the joy of visiting the children of Chernobyl and encountering hospitable locals who insist on escorting them wherever they go. McGregor and Boorman also make witty emcees, cheerfully upbeat even when they wonder aloud if one of their gun-happy hosts is a psycho murderer. The seven-episode series concludes with their emotional ride into the Big Apple and some surprises for the pair courtesy of the show's producers.
Long Way Round may have been an arduous once-in-a-lifetime experience, but you can't help but hope McGregor and Boorman suit up for another road trip someday. -- Ellen A. Kim
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Top customer reviews
I have some experience of riding bikes reasonable distances, but only within the UK, whether it was riding my KLR650 from Sussex to see my then girlfriend in York every other weekend or riding my heavily laden trailer-towing Goldwing around the UK attending events every other weekend. None of this was in any way as challenging as what these guys took on. My greatest strain was stretching out to reach the can of drink suspended in its gimbal from the bars of the Goldwing, and deciding whether to stretch out my feet onto the cruiser boards. I had comfortable tarmac all the way until I reached a well rolled field somewhere up north where I could park up the bike, throw up the Khyam tent and drop into the bar for a drink and food.
Firstly buy the special edition DVD set as advised by the other reviews.
Spoilers from here….It has all of the set up of the expedition, which is hugely interesting. For a long time the garage for the bikes sits empty of bikes and equipment, and you think that they will be going nowhere, but things slot into place. KTM decide that they are not worthy of their bikes. You must be kicking yourself now guys! BMW got such great advertising out of this, and it might be part of the reason that whenever you see a group of bikers, especially European bikers, out there in the wilds of north west Scotland, they are all riding BMW GS bikes, and look like they are thoroughly enjoying the experience.
Ewan and Charley are obviously great mates and they are tougher than you might imagine. They go through situations that most of us would have thrown in the towel. How many times can you lift a fully laden GS out of the deep and sucking mud before it starts getting a bit old?
I was expecting them to be a bit precious, but as Claudio the cameraman said in one of the extra pieces, he was allowed to film when and what he wanted, so if Ewan was having a bad hair day, he wasn’t about to be a prima donna over it. So you get a warts and all view of it, even when they are trying new “recipes” with differing successes! They are just two really down to earth guys with no airs and graces, who obviously have no time for pretentiousness.
In the places where the road ran out and there was no way around, they, and the support crew, if they were around, would come up with solutions to the problems, sometimes with the locals playing a part.
There is a bit of everything in this documentary from male bonding and boys toys, to disasters, tears and joy, through discomfort, pre-packed camping meals and pain. The only negative was that Harley Davidsons were included!
Well worth taking the time to watch this if you are interested in adventure travel especially centring around motorbikes. Don’t be surprised though if after watching it you start to look sidelong at the GS and wonder if you might just re-mortgage the house and go on your own little adventure, after all, Europe does look nice at this time of year. How about riding around Bavaria, then across to Vienna for a few days before going through the former Soviet states in Eastern Europe: Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia Herzegovina, keeping the Adriatic on your right until you roll into Greece? Then make your way across to Italy, someone has to sail across that gap surely, through France and Belgium then back home? Take 3 months to do it. Enjoy yourself. Just remember that you are a long time dead and why would you want to spend any more of your life stuck in the traffic on that hideous commute when you could be having a beer and a great meal in a restaurant alongside the Med?
Get inspired - go somewhere
The series is well produced and compulsive viewing, even when watching all 7 episodes at one sitting. Ewan comes across as a very modest, down to earth person and Charlie has a wicked sense of humour. Together they make a great double act and play off against each other to great affect.
Sure, the 2 guys have a full back up team and there is a third biker with them at all times, but this doesn't diminish the achievement of what they did. In some respects the other people add an extra dimension to the programme. The majority of the episodes focus on Ewan and Charlie and their travels.
Most of the extras are fairly bog standard. However, there are 2 extras worth looking out for. Firstly there is a more in-depth mini-episode covering the first 5 days. These days were pretty much ignored in the original series so it's great so see some more footage from Western Europe. The second extra of note is the post trip interview. Ewan and Charlie are obviously great friends and guide us through some high and lows from the trip.
All in all, an inspirational DVD. Especially to the wannabe world traveller. Watching this makes you just want to get out there and go to it.