Teton Gravity Research’s new film, “Accomplice,” chronicles 17 athletes’ sometimes complicated, always inspiring relationships with mountain biking.
“Accomplice” pairs its stars’ home videos with drone shots from Oregon, Colorado, Utah, India and British Columbia, drawing parallels between the riders’ first bikes and their latest tricks.
During a segment shot in Ladakh, India, riders Hannah Bergemann and Veronique Sandler cleared some nail-biting terrain and also immersed themselves in the community. They visited the girls secondary school and worked locals for info on the steepest trails.
“Many say that the hostility of the Himalayas is what brings us together,” a woman interviewed by the “Accomplice” team in India said.
Bergemann agreed. Riding through “the moonland” was something she’ll never forget,
“The terrain is so wild,” she said.
But the most moving part of “Accomplice” wasn’t watching aspiring bikers grow up into their flipping, flying, daring selves. It was the segment titled “The End?” in which Paul Basagoitia took viewers through his life-threatening injury and recovery process.
After Basagoitia’s gnarly landing at the Red Bull Rampage in 2015, doctors gave him a 5% chance of ever regaining feeling below his waist. Basagoitia persisted — relearning how to move his legs, walk and eventually even bike.
After watching Basagoitia painstakingly, and never fully, recover, “Accomplice” transports the viewer to the forests of Crested Butte, Colorado, where, despite still needing a cane to walk, he darts down the trails like it’s second nature and asks rhetorically, “Who wouldn’t want that lifestyle?”
If you didn’t catch the “Accomplice” premiere at the Spud Drive-In last week, you can see it in Jackson at the rodeo grounds at around 9 p.m. Aug. 9. Tickets cost $15 in advance, $20 day of: TetonGravity.com/films/accomplice/tour. ￼
Contact Julia Hornstein via firstname.lastname@example.org.