THE VALUE OF SLOW TRAVEL BY MOTORCYCLE
What if you wanted to travel around the world on a motorcycle, but had little money, certainly not enough to finance your multi-year trip. Would you delay your trip until you had saved sufficient funds?
Daniel Rintz’s approach was to work as you travel, stop when you need to, and travel slow, taking time to experience and interact with people from different cultures. The result in a journey
that’s performative, driven by experiences and the hard work required for long distance travel, rather than a trip set to a timetable and deadlines, like your typical holiday. It also makes for
an interesting documentary film.
The documentary Somewhere Else Tomorrow is a record of his journey. The film was released in 2015. A sequel is currently in the works, that follows Daniel and his girlfriend Josephine for three more years across the Americas and Africa.
HOW TO STRUCTURE A TRAVEL DOCUMENTARY FILM
Daniel and his friend Lars want to circumnavigate the world by motorcycle. Lars needs to buy a bike, get his license, and learn how to ride. Both will need to work along the way to pay for their
travel. After six months Lars returns home and Daniel continues by himself. There is much adventure, wonderful sights to see, and emotional encounters to be had. Daniel films the journey. This is
the plot of the documentary film Somewhere Else Tomorrow.
The film employs an interesting structure for a travel documentary. A first person account, interview based narrative is used to give the film coherence and connect the various on-the-road, travel video segments together. Daniel Rintz answers questions in a workshop setting. He tells a story inter-cut with video. It reads as a series of interrelated short travel stories, told in chronological order, like a friend talking about their travel adventures, with passion and reflective insight. A female voiced narrator weaves the stories together into a coherent whole, giving the film a typical narrative documentary structure. Bridging natural gaps, the voiceover narrator provides Daniel's travel stories with historical context and explanatory information on current events, a third person perspective of the journey, often explaining the riders decisions and motives; an insight into the mind of the rider. It’s an unusual yet powerful way to engage the viewer. The narrator is a silent observer, part of the journey with access to insider information, maybe the voice of the motorcycle that accompanies Daniel. As a story telling device, it works well.
MORE THAN A STORY ON TWO WHEELS
The documentary starts in Germany, introduces the main characters then follows their journey as they ride through Europe, stopping in London, England to work in the construction industry, on to
North Africa, and learning to ride in sand, followed by solo travel into Asia, Iran and Pakistan, through to South East Asia, and finally on to Australia and New Zealand.
There’s very little technical information on motorcycles, or actual details on the particulars of motorcycle travel. It’s less about riding motorcycles and more about the experiences of travel while riding, the personal journey a traveller goes through and the interesting places and different people Daniel meets. Dealing with breakdowns, sourcing parts, receiving help from locals, and sometimes helping them too, learning the value of slow travel, and the generosity of people one meets along the way.
The music track is understated and complementary to the visuals. It withdraws into the background, unlike your typical YouTube montage based travel video. Overall the documentary is well edited and produced, with professional looking graphics and voiceover content, and the quality of the video footage improves over the duration of the film, maybe reflecting the author’s increase in film making skills.
The documentary ends with Daniel and Josephine riding off into the sunset to complete the final part of the world circumnavigation. If you're interested in finding out about the second part of the journey, the author is currently crowdfunding for the competition of the film.
CROWDFUNDING PART TWO OF THE JOURNEY
“Josephine and Daniel have just returned after another three years on the road traveling the Americas and Africa! This journey concludes Daniel’s attempt to circumnavigate the world by motorcycle - only making money for the trip along the way.” Checkout their Indiegogo campaign. The documentary film trailer/teaser is below.
For further information on Somewhere Else Tomorrow go to the Open Explorers' website.