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Thread: "A Californian Homage to Top Gear"

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    svb
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    "A Californian Homage to Top Gear"

    WE ARE RELEASING THE FILM NOW!!

    For anyone who hasn't seen or heard of our project before, here is the basic rundown again: My friends and I decided to take on Top Gear and challenge their assertion that the greatest driving road in the world was in Europe. We reasoned that it could be found in California, and so we decided to have a cheap car challenge to determine if we were right. We gave ourselves a budget of $5,000 each for the cars and then set out to see what we could find.

    So the title we finally settled on was "A Californian Homage to Top Gear," which, maybe isn't all that inspiring but at least it accurately describes our film. We thought about coming up with a title but ultimately decided to avoid branding ourselves with a silly name.

    After long hours editing and much anticipation, we are now releasing the final film!! It's being broken up into 6 parts and is being posted to blip.tv as I type this (and will later be posted on youtube once we sort out format issues).

    All 6 parts are converted to flash on blip.tv now. You can also watch full quality Quicktime clips.

    Please see our website for links to all the videos:

    http://greatestroadinca.blogspot.com/



    Last edited by svb; January 31st, 2009 at 5:15 PM. Reason: added parts 4-6
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    Watched parts one to three through - some of which I've seen before.

    It's still really good and enjoyable. Can't wait for the last 3 parts.

    Two little things. One is the camera car and the footage it took. Sometimes it looks really great - on the motorways and on some of the roads - and sometimes it is really 'bumpy' and shaky - second half of part 3; which is a shame - it looked great in the second half of part 2. Is that just down to the road quality? The other is the name. I can see why you changed the title but I did quite like "The Greatest Driving Road in California"...
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    need to see moar now!
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    Previously Known As Jamesd Dsemaj's Avatar
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    Are you going to have a seperate complete .avi file to download? I'd much rather be able to get a standalone file so I can watch it on my TV

    Fantastic to see this finally done!

    EDIT: Downloading the HD .mov's, they look fantastic! Shame about the quailty of the in car cameras though, very pixleated. But it still looks fantastic.
    Last edited by Dsemaj; January 26th, 2009 at 1:39 AM.
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    Great Job! Looking forward to the last half.

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    svb
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    Quote Originally Posted by teeb View Post
    Two little things. One is the camera car and the footage it took. Sometimes it looks really great - on the motorways and on some of the roads - and sometimes it is really 'bumpy' and shaky - second half of part 3; which is a shame - it looked great in the second half of part 2. Is that just down to the road quality?
    In a word, yes. Especially on the first day, the road quality got worse as we went along. As such, the footage was unfortunately somewhat shaky. We tried to order a Citroen C6 for the shoot but we were told they apparently don't sell that in the US so we had to settle for a Grand Cherokee.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dsemaj View Post
    Are you going to have a seperate complete .avi file to download? I'd much rather be able to get a standalone file so I can watch it on my TV
    Yes, we will have a full start-to-finish high quality file, hopefully within a week. Once we do, we can do a torrent for you guys who want it (as long as someone can set that up for me; I've never -started- a torrent before).

    Also, PART 4 IS ONLINE NOW!! (see links above)
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    Before TGUS got picked up, I made a couple films with my friends just for fun that were our take on what a US version of Top Gear could be. Check them out: A Californian Homage to Top Gear and Tahoe Snow Challenge

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    I'm a piano until proven otherwise Posmo's Avatar
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    I really like the idea, and I love the Fiat, but frankly I found it painful to watch. The whole vid seems too pretentious, I know you're not actors, and you dont have a huge budget which is a shame because the "Californian homage to Top Gear" could really have been something. As it is, its just a collection of clips of 3 not-very-interesting guys in California, must have been a blast to make though

    No flaming please, just an honest opinion.

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    rides with Rebecca Black.. in the back thedguy's Avatar
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    Definitely felt forced. Though I've been saying that California has plenty to compete with on the world front for driving roads. I've also disagreed that Stelvio was the best on account that a bunch of straights+ hairpins will get boring quickly.

    edit: How come you guys never once show the roads you're actually driving on? That was the point of the whole video wasn't it?

    edit2: Being from Norcal explains a lot
    Last edited by thedguy; January 26th, 2009 at 3:04 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Posmo View Post
    I really like the idea, and I love the Fiat, but frankly I found it painful to watch. The whole vid seems too pretentious,
    Fully agreed.

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    Very well done. I've enjoyed it so far and will definitely watch the last couple parts when you post them. The quality is good, particularly considering the resources you had.

    Somewhat surprised at how much money you spent to make this (maybe I'm just poor) but it looks like it was a lot of fun so I'd say money well spent.

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    Fucking QUICKTIME?!

    Can you please release these in another format or on another service? I fucking hate Quicktime, and I can't get it to play sound on my computer.
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    Nice slops there : p
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    Just finished watching everything that's up so far. Nicely done and excellent production! I really wish I had been a part of this, it looks like you guys had a blast!

    Could this be the start of something? FinalGear.com user-generated content? If everything is as good as this, we could do it. Think about it, all our members from all over the world on a quest to find the greatest driving road! It would be one of the most epic undertakings we have ever managed, eclipsing Hammond's helmet or even the 24 hours of LeMons races.

    I'm going back to Utah later this year and I know of a few excellent roads in the area. I can see about some cameras and I know a guy who would help with the editing (since I've never done it before).

    This could work...
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    is meh. Luca's Avatar
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    I enjoyed that. Needs more hard driving though. Not so sure on the bmw driver shirts or the fiats driver subaru hat.

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    If anyone gets a chance to put these on an FTP, I would be incredibly grateful! I can even provide the FTP if someone can upload them!
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    Previously Known As Jamesd Dsemaj's Avatar
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    I mean, you guys have made a great video and I love it (on part 4 so far), but you probably need to try and show the roads a bit better. Sometimes I find that when you talk about something, it would have been a lot better with a filler shot. Like, when the weird-3-wheeler car drove past the guys and went out of the shot, I was expecting you to cut to it moving around or something. But I guess that was probably limited by the fact you had only one exterior shot camera, yeah? That said, you only had one camera car too. Probably a bit harder to show without a helicopter too..

    It's not perfect, but still a good load of fun.

    Voiceovers could feel a bit more natural. When you went to get brake fluid, the resulting voiceover feels a bit boring and/or sorta forced. I'd think a more colloquial statement like "After the Fiat's fluid was topped up again, we set back to the road" would flow a bit better with what really is a colloquial sorta thing

    But honestly, like I've said in the past, I'm really jealous of what you guys have done. Feels like a whole load of fun.
    Last edited by Dsemaj; January 26th, 2009 at 1:40 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dsemaj View Post
    I mean, you guys have made a great video and I love it (on part 4 so far), but you probably need to try and show the roads a bit better. Sometimes I find that when you talk about something, it would have been a lot better with a filler shot. Like, when the weird-3-wheeler car drove past the guys and went out of the shot, I was expecting you to cut to it moving around or something. But I guess that was probably limited by the fact you had only one exterior shot camera, yeah? That said, you only had one camera car too. Probably a bit harder to show without a helicopter too..
    Exactly... a helicopter would have been great! But yes, one of our biggest limitations was our inability to get a lot of good forward-facing shots. We tried it a few times but with the cars and the equipment we were using, it never came out the way we wanted and we figured the shots of the cars show enough to give you somewhat of an idea the bends & twists of the roads we were on. We were also pretty severely limited by time as we had 3 days to do everything you see here.

    As to the other criticisms, all I can say is that this was the first time we'd ever attempted anything of this nature or on this scale. It took us a bit to get really comfortable and to know what we were doing, and I think we really hit our stride the second day with the challenge in San Francisco. If you're not liking it right off the bat, skip ahead to part 5 and see what you think; our best stuff is there.

    Anyway, PART SIX is online now. It's not encoding to flash for some odd reason (we've tried a couple times now), but for now if you want to watch it in full quality quicktime (I know, the horror...), you can. See links above.
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    Why no torrent with the whole "movie"? =)
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    svb
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akilles View Post
    Why no torrent with the whole "movie"? =)
    Quote Originally Posted by svb View Post
    Yes, we will have a full start-to-finish high quality file, hopefully within a week. Once we do, we can do a torrent for you guys who want it (as long as someone can set that up for me; I've never -started- a torrent before).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blind_Io View Post
    Fucking QUICKTIME?!

    Can you please release these in another format or on another service? I fucking hate Quicktime, and I can't get it to play sound on my computer.
    +1
    Please make part 6 not quicktime
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