Long Way Round [DVD] 
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Long Way Round documents the adventures of film stars Ewan McGregor (Trainspotting, Moulin Rouge, Star Wars) and Charley Boorman on their 20,000 mile motor bike trip around the world. Departing from London on 14th April 2004 the pair travelled through Europe, Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Siberia, Alaska, Canada arriving in the USA just over 3 months later. Along the way the intrepid pair encountered Kalashnikov-toting gangsters and extreme cuisine, survived numerous motorised scrapes often whilst traversing non existent roads days from the nearest hospital and found themselves alarmingly close to a hungry grizzly bear. They arrived at their final destination, New York, on 29th July and this DVD release with companion soundtrack tells the story from the eyes of the two film stars.
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 --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
All other original episodes are present, except the last, which has been extended to 2 epsiodes to cover the North American traverse in more detail. Again, this is welcome, although the challenges to the bikes here seem to be more of the human variety, rather than the natural variety as in Mongolia. Added footage includes more of Alaska (bears, including a debate between the boys about the morality of shooting bears), a visit to the Harley factory and more words from the boy's better halves.
The final episode is more of a one year on retrospective and is a fitting conslusion, providing an insight into how the series was received and how it changed the crew's lives.
The other extras, on top of those on the original DVD are interesting, mostly of interview footage, but include comments from the cameramen, director and producer. They make interesting viewing for fans of the series. After viewing this, you understand more of what they whole team went through and a little more detail about some of the events.
Overall, this Special Edition is exactly what it says, and is worth buying if you already have the original and became hooked. It is clear that the producers wanted to utilise a little extra budget to produce a better product (which they couldn't do first time around as they didn't realise how popular it would be).Read more ›
It's impossible not to get emotionally attached to the guys as they undertake their journey battling against incredible odds. If it was a live documentary you would genuinely fear that the next episode may report the sad loss of one or both of their lives. The terrain and scenery of some of the locations is simply stunning but the dangers are all too evident and always in the back of your mind. What they achieved is an incredible feat for anybody but for two 'normal' bikers it is unbelievable and as a biker myself I can only feel an even deeper appreciation for the sheer difficulties they sometimes faced. They also meet some incredible (and incredibly kind) people along the way and as Ewen says 'it's a small planet....they are people just like us'.
The series contains quite a bit of swearing and some of the footage is very raw but this only serves to remind you that what you're seeing is what they experienced 'there and then'. During their time in Mongolia you can see it etched on their faces that the whole thing is even harder than they could ever have expected. They (and Claudio the bike riding cameraman) really were exposed to whatever may have come their way.
Funny, moving, inspiring and breathtaking in equal measures - everybody should watch this series documenting an incredible journey. Right, now where's the keys to the bike!
I have recommended this dvd to everyone I know, and not a single person has been unsatisfied. I wish more celebrities would use their influence in such a humble and beneficient way. I'm so grateful that they went to the lenths and efforts they did to share this with everyone. They could have just gone on their own, but they didn't - they wanted viewers worldwide to see the children who live in pipes to keep warm, the church made of skulls, the rivers that claim lives every year, the killer whales, the festivals, the crazy food and the delightful communities.
There are parts of the world on this show that most people didn't even know existed. And, most importantly, viewers not only root for the team the whole way through but share their anxieties, humor, turmoils and victories.
Those who already have the travel bug, beware - this show will make you want to drive around the world yourself!
Do yourself a big favor and watch this dvd!! You won't regret it.
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.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you're into bikes and adventure you'll love it. Ewan is not just a pretty boy actor and Charlie is not just an ugly sod :) it was a really challenging trip. Read morePublished 3 months ago by B. Mawdsley
As a biker and campervanner (is that a word?) I love this series. It’s quite inspiring and fascinating and has caused a few trips of my own back when I first saw it (nothing like... Read morePublished 4 months ago by M. Bridge-wilkinson
A really really good & interesting dvd. Watched it a few years ago & have now bought it for my partner to enjoy. Just terrific!Published 4 months ago by hazel collier