Road Transport | 1980 | Sound | Colour
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It's your bike is a film about the history of the bicycle and also about how to use and maintain your bicycle so that you avoid accidents.
An old banger of a car pulls up on a suburban English street and comes to a halt, the motor starts smoking and then a man gets out and is engulfed in smoke, there is some very funky 'rap' style music playing in the background (this rap continues for the whole film providing the commentary). A grown man dressed as a schoolboy, with cap and short trousers rides a bicycle along the road, a man riding a unicycle shoots out of a driveway and forces the overgrown schoolboy to swerve on his bike, there is a definite 'comic' feel to this film, very much 'of its time' the shot cuts to outside a shop, where two more men dressed as schoolboys engage in a skirmish, there is a fight of sorts, there is also a sort of gangster type character in pork-pie hat with cigarette in mouth, who breaks up the fight, some very funky 1970's style music plays in the background. The two 'boys' having the fight are sent off on their bikes to chase the main boy on the bike who drives past, they are observed by a man dressed in Dickensian costume, he watches them as they drive along, the two boys take a side cutting where a sign points the way to a sweet shop, the main boy carries on along the main road.
We move to what resembles the outside the sweetshop, where the main boy licks his lips, he produces a chain from his pocket and chains his bike to a fence, the other two boys see him do this and hide behind a tree, the two boys creep up when the main boy has gone and try to steal the bike but one of them falls over as the chain prevents him from doing so, the main boy emerges from the sweet shop reading a comic, he sees that his bike has been stripped of its handlebars and is just a basic frame. Close up of the boy looking horrified. The boy goes to the bike and tries to repair it, the man in the Dickensian costume appears by him and has an ancient metal bicycle a 'hobby-horse', the boy looks up at him in amazement.
The two boys ride up a country road toward the camera, they stop and use a slingshot to shoot a hat from the head of an old man, presumably a teacher. Back to the boy, who uses his satchel as a seat, the boy and the Dickensian man ride away together down the same track, in a rural setting, they are then seen pushing their bikes down a main road, but with not much traffic on it, some cyclists on 'racer' bikes come in the opposite direction, on the other side of the road. The Dickensian man helps a young boy with something on his bicycle, the Dickensian man then crosses back over the street to where the main boy is holding a sort of small coffee table on the front of his bike. The two come down a long road toward camera and stop by some grass, where they come across a part of a bicycle on the grass, the boy goes careering off and is then seen with his feet sticking up out of the ground, he has apparently fallen off his bike, the Dickensian man helps him out of the ditch and picks his bike up for him. We move back to the two boys who were in pursuit of the main boy, and the camera closes up on their faces as they ride along. Cut to the main boy fixing his bike, with the help of the Dickensian fellow, who oversees him, a white cardboard hand comes from off screen to point out what needs to be working for the bike t be ridden safely, the music track explains what needs to be done to ensure the bike is safe to ride, the main boy follows the advice of the song, then the Dickensian man's bike disappears and is replaced by a Penny farthing bicycle, the man looks amazed and calls the main boy over to have a look at the bike, the Dickensian man mounts the Penny farthing and rides off, the voiceover states that they both now have peddle power, but neither bikes have breaks, the main boy on his bike follows behind the Dickensian man, they head down a another stretch of country lane.
A street scene in an urban setting, where ice cream sellers bring out their wares in wheeled vehicles, together with other tradesmen who are wheeling various vehicles along the ride, they converge in the centre of the screen, including an apple cart, which is overturned when the two mischievous boys ride through. Then the Dickensian man and the main boy ride through and help out a man who has fallen into the bonnet of his car, as the two mischievous boys rode through, they pull him out and also try and sort out the mess left by the other two boys. The original boy finds his stolen break lead and with the help of the Dickensian man he re-affixes it to his bike. There is a shot of the Penny farthing 'boneshaker' which is lying on the ground, it then disappears, and is replaced by another bike, the Dickensian man sees that there is a mechanism on the bike that pushes a small lever down onto the top of the front wheel, acting as a brake.. A post woman rides along on her bicycle in the opposite direction to the Dickensian man and the main boy, she looks over to the two, wears a puzzled expression and the two people ride off up a kind of woodland path, the main boy rubs his posterior, although he is not riding the old bicycle, but his one with the satchel for a saddle. The two mischievous boys ride along a road, around a bend and then stop at the grass verge by the side of the road, and collapse onto it, exhausted, the Dickensian man and the main boy ride past them as they sit there, and then they get up and ride after them in pursuit. Cut to the main boy stationary, pumping up one of his tyres, and also fixing some reflectors onto the pokes of his wheels.
Some road workers by a red and white striped small tent eat their lunch on their laps, and the two boys ride past and one rides into the tent, making it collapse, as well as himself. The various people whom the two boys have inconvenienced on their journey are now in a line chasing them, waving their fists at them angrily, they all eventually come back to the gangster-like man who sent the boys out in the first place and they collide and end up in a heap on the floor. The main boyrides past and laughs at and points at the ensuing chaos, he turns to speak to the Dickensian man whom he thinks is riding behind him, and finds he isn't there. He then sees him in the shop window that he was in originally, motionless. He scratches his head and rides on, looking puzzled, but then forgetting about it. He rides to the end of the road, and offers a hand signal to indicate that he is turning right into the main road, as the credits appear. The gangster and the two boys are seen sitting in a heap, 'defeated', and the main boy 'hero' rides on smiling. The Dickensian man in the shop window winks in a most sinister fashion.
A truly bizarre film, worth watching for that reason alone !
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