By Victor Wanchena
Being a mildly cynical moto-journalist it is rare that I see a movie that gets me diving for maps or trolling Craigslist for another bike. Motonomad II was one of those movies. Sequels are almost always bad: Cannonball Run II, Blue Brothers 2000, Breakin’ 2 Electric Boogaloo the list is endless. Motonomad II on the other hand shows the refinement of a filmmaker’s craft and truly out does the first.
Motonomad (MMM #175) was a film on an unsupported adventure ride through Europe and the Mid-East by Adam Riemann the Aussie moto-journalist who’s personal mantra seems to be go big or go home. Motonomad II finds Adam even more ambitious, planning to fly three KTM 500 EXCs into Almaty, Kazakhstan. From there he and his companions plan to ride through Kazakhstan to the Altai region of Russia, then cross into Mongolia. Once across Mongolia they plan to ride across the Gobi Desert circling back to their final destination in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
Sounds familiar right? The Long Way Round boys did some of this and it wasn’t too tough. Hell, they were on much bigger bikes. Where Riemann and crew set themselves apart is how they plunge into the unknown, riding cross-country in extremely remote areas. No trails, no tracks, just sketchy maps and a few waypoints in a GPS. The result is fascinating footage of riding in remote regions.
Riemann raises the bar for adventure movies. No support crew, no chase truck, minimal gear for weeks on the road, plus a fair amount of camera gear including a drone. The daring and audacity of their ride was as stunning as the scenery. It was not without drama though. Drowned bikes, flat tires, and scarce fuel are just some of the obstacles they face. Maybe for the next movie, Riemann and crew will keep going all the way around. One can only hope.
I thoroughly enjoyed Motonomad II and was again impressed by the quality of the production. This is a well-produced movie and worth the purchase price. Motonomad II is available as a digital download from Motology Films (www.motologyfilms.com) for $20 or $39.99 on DVD.