"A Wild and Wonderful Ride"
What You Need To Know:
DUST TO GLORY is a wild and wonderful ride. Audiences will be riveted watching drivers push themselves through treacherous silt beds, navigate dangerously close to enthusiastic spectators, and overcome unimaginable difficulties just to finish this grueling ordeal. Through it all, DUST TO GLORY is a loving tribute to the bonds of family and loved ones. It’s one of those rare movies that breaks through the barriers of documentary filmmaking to communicate stories from a wholesome perspective.
(BB, A, L, V, A, D) Strong moral worldview about a free-for-all off-road race through Baja, with a very strong emphasis placed on family and generational relationships as well as strong themes of courage, determination, teamwork; eight mild obscenities and two exclamations of “Oh my God”; racing violence includes several scenes of mostly minor vehicle crashes, and talk of a spectator’s death; no sex or nudity, but brief kissing at finish line; no sex or nudity, but very short scene of women dancing on an outdoor stage; no drinking but many sponsors are beer companies; short archive clip of man smoking; and, nothing else objectionable.
DUST TO GLORY captures the excitement and exhilaration of a famously harrowing offroad race known as the Baja 1000. Director Dana Brown (who brilliantly explored surfing in the 2003 documentary STEP INTO LIQUID) follows a dozen or so pulse-pounding dramas unfolding during this event. Most important, he focuses like a laser beam on family relationships and teamwork, the backbone of this historic race.
For over 30 years, this 1000-mile offroad trek remains the longest point-to-point race in the world. Launching from Ensenada, Mexico, the course is changed each year by its founder, Sal Fish. The race is appropriately described by one driver as “like being in a 24-hour plane crash.” Drivers are sent racing over vast deserts, barren beaches, rocky peaks, and sometimes cattle-congested highways. Unlike “closed-course” races in the U.S., the dangers and difficulties of the Baja 1000 are intensified as the racers share dirt roads and paved streets with civilian vehicles and pedestrians.
DUST TO GLORY excels by focusing on several teams of drivers and the race’s own colorful history. Dana Brown and Cinematographer Kevin Ward effectively use dune buggy chase vehicles and several helicopter crews to highlight the thrilling and jaw-dropping action of the race itself. Drivers push themselves through treacherous silt beds, navigate dangerously close to enthusiastic spectators, and overcome unimaginable difficulties just to finish this grueling 30-hour ordeal.
Adding to the eccentricities of this race, the Baja 1000 allows racers to drive everything from motorcycles to trophy trucks to Volkswagon Beetles. There are fewer race rules and almost no restrictions in this do-or-die endurance test. There are family teams with drivers as young as 16, returning champions, professional racers, outrageous amateurs, and even drivers in their sixties and seventies.
Through it all, DUST TO GLORY is a loving tribute to family relationships. It’s one of those rare movies that breaks through the barriers of documentary-style storytelling to communicate thrilling stories from a wholesome and moral perspective. DUST TO GLORY is a wild and wonderful ride that emphasizes and extols the bonds of family and loved ones. Although the race sounds like it would be too harrowing, the racing violence in the movie includes only mostly minor vehicle crashes and talk about a spectator’s death.