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One Movie Punch

Apr 12, 2018

Today’s movie is “The Road Movie” (2018), the Russian found-footage film from Dimitrii Kalishnikov, composed entirely of found footage shared from dashboard cameras, including car crashes, violent behavior, drunken revelry, and a meteor strike. If you were looking for something more than that, you’ll be sorely disappointed, and in some scenes, likely offended.

Nearly every driver in Russia has a dashboard camera (dashcams), and for good reason. Between dealing with corrupt law enforcement and insurance claims, the videos are a cheap means of protecting yourself, which means an insane number of cars on the road are nearly always recording, leading to the capture of some truly unique moments.

“The Road Movie” is a visual mixtape of dashcam footage, with a minimum amount of editing and soundtracking. The film has no real structure, outside of titles at the beginning and credits at the end. It is no better or worse than your basic YouTube playlist, except some scenes would likely be banned for containing offensive language and behaviors, often for nothing more than shock value, as far as I can tell.

It’s a real shame, to be honest, because there is so much potential here. The sheer volume of material being captured creates multiple opportunities for content creation, but also potentially turning every dashcam into a private reality television show. All the world would truly become a stage, a multi-opticon future, that takes advantage of this format for entertainment and, at least in Russia, very real social purposes.

“The Road Movie” (2018) loses a lot of points from me for the racist, sexist and homophobic elements in the scenes, often just slurs directed at other people. I was hoping for the best of the best and got a quickly edited playlist of content. Fans of found footage documentaries, or just folks who like watching bad things happen, will enjoy watching this film. Everyone else can probably check the clickbaiters.

Rotten Tomatoes: 87

Metacritic: 66

One Movie Punch: 3.8/10

“The Road Movie” (2018) is not rated and is currently streaming on Amazon Prime.