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Speedo: A Demolition Derby Love Story

7 customer reviews

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(Nov 02, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Winner of audience and jury awards at film festivals across the country SPEEDO is an original American love story set amidst the dangerous bare-knuckled world of demolition derby. Hailed as "highly enjoyable" (Variety) and "an instant cult classic" (Film Threat) SPEEDO kicks up the dirt surrounding Ed "Speedo" Jager one of the nation's top "demo" daredevils. A Long Island garage mechanic by day the lanky-haired Speedo spends his free time at work compulsively rebuilding his pieced-together wrecks before each competition: "It's an addiction" he says "like nitro-methane through your veins." But as a hobby turns into an obsession Speedo's marriage of twenty years begins to deteriorate like a junkyard Cadillac which only fuels his raceway rages. Will a developing crush with a female track official finally bring peace to this hell on wheels? With a riveting v+ªrit+ª style director Jesse Moss compassionately captures Speedo's collisions and confrontations on and off the track during one tumultuous year. From the fiery thrills of the metal monsters in action to the intimate dramas between a dysfunctional family and a budding romance SPEEDO is what you'd call a high-octane crowd-pleaser! DVD Features: Audio Commentary with filmmaker Jesse Moss and Ed "Speedo" Jager; Deleted Scenes and Updates; Speedo Photo Gallery; Interactive Menus; Scene Selection

Like any good documentary, Speedo finds layers of meaning beneath its simple, entertaining story. With genuine affection for his subject, filmmaker Jesse Moss aims his camera at the wild and wacky blue-collar life of Ed "Speedo" Jager, a gas-station mechanic from Long Island, New York, who's determined to become the demolition derby champion of America. As he bolts together his latest wreck for demo-track competition, Speedo's raw language and homespun wisdom reveal a man who's uneducated but sharply in tune with his goals, desires, and responsibilities as a father. Moss's camera captures it all, from the volatile aggression of pit-lane competitors to the disapproving wrath of Ed's soon-to-be-ex-wife and punk-rock aspirations of his teenage son, who yearns for a wreck-worthy car of his own. By the time Ed finds a supportive new girlfriend, Speedo reveals a perfect match of family man, good-hearted woman, and the pursuit of happiness on the demo-derby circuit. Without a hint of condescension toward his working-class hero, Moss has crafted a memorable portrait that's purely American and yet universally appealing to optimists of any class. --Jeff Shannon

Special Features

  • Deleted scenes and updates
  • Speedo photo gallery

Product Details

  • Actors: Ed 'Speedo' Jager, Linda Jager, Anthony Jager, Michael Jager, Liz Mallows
  • Directors: Jesse Moss
  • Producers: Jesse Moss, Amanda McBaine
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Docurama
  • DVD Release Date: November 2, 2004
  • Run Time: 80 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002V7NYS
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #207,926 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Speedo: A Demolition Derby Love Story" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By stoic VINE VOICE on February 28, 2011
Format: DVD
Speedo is a 2004 documentary about Ed "Speedo" Jager - a champion demolition derby driver with a troubled home life. Speedo has attracted excellent reviews, but I thought that the film was mediocre. Jager is somewhat likeable in that he wears his heart on his sleeve and his passion for the demolition derby is contagious. On the other hand, he is also a sore loser who pouts, curses, and gets into fights when he loses. Moreover, the scenes showing Speedo's troubled home life are only mildly interesting and quite depressing.

I'm glad that I saw Speedo, but I can't give it a strong recommendation.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ronald Scheer on December 25, 2007
Format: DVD
This award-winning documentary follows Ed "Speedo" Jager, a 41-year-old demolition derby driver as he competes during the years 1999-2000 from his home base on Long Island. He is a pistol, a driven man, and someone to contend with, while also being the loving father of two boys and at the same time on the verge of divorce. Filmmaker Jesse Moss (as we learn in the commentary) is attracted first by Jager's competitive performance as he struggles for the recognition he craves and then discovers the complexities of his personal life. Dubbed a "love story," the film celebrates with him the emergence of a fulfilling relationship with another woman, who takes a more sympathetic and active interest in his life as a demo driver and his dreams of becoming a stock car racer.

The film opens a window into a world most audiences would not consider film-worthy, but Moss makes Jager's story fascinating, touching, and finally exciting. When you first see him, grimy, long-haired, and exhausted after a disappointing demolition event, you wonder how you'll ever get interested in him, and by the end of the film, you're cheering along with him - an everyman just doing the best he can to live his dream against the odds. Unusual for a documentary, the DVD includes a commentary by Moss and Jager, who through the process of making this film have become close friends. Definitely worthy seeing.
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By pluvious on November 30, 2009
Format: DVD
I wasn't expecting too much from this film, but checked it out as I was interested in learning a bit more about the low budget demolition derby culture. After a few minutes, though, I was hooked. The central character is very compelling, and his story is so well developed, I couldn't help but be drawn in. Like "Hands on a Hardbody," this film will surprise you with its depth, its humanity, and its willingness to take the characters on their own terms, without judgment or condescension. The film makers obviously spent a tremendous amount of time and energy making this film, and it shows. There's an acute intelligence at work here, and a tremendous amount of empathy. As an audience member I always appreciate it when an artist doesn't underestimate the audience. What you expect to be a semi-comic, semi-ironic portrayal turns out to be a deeply felt story about real people, struggling with real issues and emotions, an honest to goodness human drama. "Speedo" is a real treat. Highly recommended.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This was a an interesting and entertaining documentary of a man that some would say was misunderstood, struggling to make his dream come true. I see it a as story about a man who puts his dream before family to the point of causing a divorce and is made out to be the victim. So it was a good story of morals and ethics, one that I bought hoping more for the demolition derby side of it, but was mildly disappointed. They only showed small portions of the demos. A good story, good filming, one I might watch once in a great while, but nothing real amazing.
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