Archive for the ‘Videos’ Category

Ken Block is a revolutionary driver. He’s very controversial in the motorsports realm, but so was Elvis in the music world when he broke out. Still there are no ifs, buts, or maybes about it – Ken Block is a genius. He may not be the fastest guy on the grid, but I’ll run naked through San Francisco if he’s not changing the game when it comes to how driving is seen, celebrated, and appreciated stateside (and even globally).

Speaking of the city on the bay, Ken’s latest – and maybe greatest – short film, entitled ‘Gymkhana Five: Ultimate Urban Playground; San Francisco’ just dropped. I honestly wanted to get another editorial into this blog before posting more videos, but this one just can’t go ignored. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been so astounded, delighted, frightened, and genuinely stunned by a solo driving video since I was a young boy watching Jean Louis Mourey’s incredible 1988 short ‘Climb Dance’ documenting Ari Vantanen’s record-breaking run up Colorado’s Pike’s Peak (watch the original here).

Anyhow, there’s nothing more to say about Block’s latest modern masterpiece other than noting that this man is nothing short of a genuine artist behind the wheel. Hats off to you, Ken Block, and to the beautiful city of San Francisco, and to those who actually allowed such a film to be made.

For those who can’t view embedded links, click here to view Ken Block’s Gymkhana Five.

…recently uploaded new campaign videos to YouTube. Ok, before you call me out for calling them ‘campaign videos’ – I’m aware that they are viral videos, and haven’t been created (yet) as TV-going commercials, but let’s face it: they are companies that are in it for profit, and those videos are monetized. I digress – less than one paragraph into my post I’ve meandered into territory that is insignificant to the post. The point is this: these videos are awesome, simply put.

The first features the Benz SLS AMG droptop, out to break the world record for fastest ball catch. Besides the skill and calculation that went into this production, it’s a beautiful juxtaposition of perhaps the most conservative sport in the western world with blasphemous powerful, tire-smoking Hoonism. So go ahead – watch an AMG convertible catch a golf ball at speed without as much as a single dent!

 

Next, from Karl Benz’s rival Bavarian badge comes a piece of video art featuring the new BMW M5 as a bullet fired on its own power out a giant tunnel (read: gun chamber) aimed at three art-constellation targets…all of which the V8 saloon shatters with triple-digit force.

 

In my opinion, as cool as both are, the SLS AMG wins for verisimilitude. The BMW video is under speculation for its veracity. I don’t think it matters much whether or not it’s real, it’s still very, very entertaining and creative, but it speaks less for the driver’s skill being that it is likely a composite of real footage and CGI. If it turns out that it’s real, I’ll eat my words, but that car looks too perfect after smashing through barriers at those speeds. If anyone is going to attempt it in real life though, I nominate Jezza, since he’s already fond of car/gun mash-ups. Hopefully his back will hold up better than when he put a Lorrie through a brick wall.

 

If Nissan makes you tingle this video will make you blush. I know I did. From GT cars to bluebirds, this video has some nice variety that will put you in high gear for today’s touring as well as walk you besides nostalgic stages with pedigree-laden racers of yesteryear. Turn up your sound and enjoy.

Good times, Mr. Block, good times.

Those are the words I’d say to him if I were to sit down and listen to Ken Block recount Gymkhana 1-3. Maybe I’d give him a high five for that third installment at the Autodrome in France. Each one was vastly impressive, though just so pure in fun factor that they call for something bro-tastic, like a high five with an enthusiastic “yea-heah!” or a slap on the butt and a grin.

With Gymkhana 4, Ken Block takes his Ford Fiesta beyond pure car-nage and ups the ante for sheer outright entertainment at where better a location than …. that’s right, Universal Studios backlot. There are sharks, fire, apes on ladders, and even the crew from YouTube’s best culinary channel: Epic Meal Time.

That being said, less chat, more hoon. Video below: