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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Sports > Biking > Blood, Sweat & Gears – Racing Clean To The Tour De France (2008/First Run Features DVD)

Blood, Sweat & Gears – Racing Clean To The Tour De France (2008/First Run Features DVD)


Picture: C     Sound: C     Extras: C     Documentary: B-



Just when I thought I would not see another documentary on the Tour De France, here comes Nick Davis’ Blood, Sweat & Gears – Racing Clean To The Tour De France (2008) about a U.S. team determined to be part of the race by not using any performance-enhancing drugs whatsoever.  It can be controversial and raw, more interesting than not and has enough moments to give it a good look.


The opening shows the how badly the sport like any other anymore has become the victim of drug use and the many athletes who feel they have to take them to compete.  As in Bigger, Stronger, Faster (reviewed elsewhere on this site) ruined the idea of true competition as big money and most people cheating on those drugs has ended up making pro sports more about winning at all costs than winning and being happy about just that.


Cycling and biking at this level has had its share of scandals and as a result, those running it have been relatively stricter than competing professional sports.  David Millar, Christian Vande Velde, Matt White, Doug Ellis, Magnus Backstedt and many others are featured and even if you don’t know much about the sport, this also becomes a study of the character of the sport and its participants on and off the track.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image is a tad weaker than a new digital shoot should be, down a generation, we gather.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 sound is sort of stereophonic, often monophonic and has location sound limits that sometime call for subtitling.  At least the makers realize the audio limits.  Extras include text Director’s Statement & separate Biography, stills and two shorts: Millar’s Tale and Adventures With Har-V & Geraldine.



For more on competition biking and The Tour De France, try Hell On Wheels, a First Run Feature release we covered, at this link:






-   Nicholas Sheffo


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