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Hands on a Hardbody: The Documentary (1997) Film of the Week #284

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Cocoa
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Hands on a Hardbody: The Documentary (1997) Film of the Week #284

#1

Post by Cocoa » June 9th, 2019, 2:38 pm

Film of the Week #284: Hands on a Hardbody: The Documentary (1997)

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Summary:
Twenty-four contestants compete in an endurance/sleep deprivation contest in order to win a brand new Nissan Hardbody truck. The last person to remain standing with his or her hand on the truck wins. An absurd marketing gimmick at first glance, the contest proves to be much more.

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#557 on 1000<400, with 175 checks.
Nominated by 72allinncallme, blocho, Cocoa.
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#557(⇩74, #483) Hands on a Hard Body: The Documentary (1997)
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Directed by: S.R. Bindler
(257.01 Pts, 13 Votes) , Top 1–10–50: 0–0–1
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#2

Post by 72allinncallme » June 9th, 2019, 3:37 pm

This one needs to get back on the list. Silly serious fun.


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#4

Post by Cocoa » June 12th, 2019, 11:24 pm

This film's editing feels like American reality tv game series/seasons/shows from the early 2000s and 1990s. (My knowledge of realty tv shows from other countries is limited and I don't think I personally watched a foreign reality show from pre-2000s so I don't know if it's the same style of editing for shows in other countries during the 1990s.) I would judge the film harsher if it was released today, but it's fine for its time period with its subject matter and genre. This film feels much longer than it actually is due to all the short interviews and scenes. Some of the content I wish would have been edited out or shortened (the scene about the air conditioner went on way too long) and there is some stuff I would have liked to see more of as I frankly only have opinions on a few contestants. I started out rooting against the religious woman... but then I was rooting for her because most of the others were meh :lol:

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#5

Post by Nathan Treadway » June 12th, 2019, 11:45 pm

Is this like the documentary version of They Shoot Horses?

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#6

Post by Cocoa » June 14th, 2019, 12:57 am

Nathan Treadway wrote:
June 12th, 2019, 11:45 pm
Is this like the documentary version of They Shoot Horses?
It's similar. A bunch of desperate folks compete in an endurance challenge (having their hand on a car) and hope to win the prize (a truck) by being the last one left standing.

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#7

Post by joachimt » June 14th, 2019, 3:24 pm

Fun watch. It's a shame though that
SpoilerShow
they missed most of the events that made people drop out, so most of the dropouts hardly got any attention.
I thought the end of the contest was a bit of an anticlimax, because
SpoilerShow
it was decided by the woman clapping her hands on the music. Rather stupid thing to end it, but understandably, because by that time you'll be losing attention. I just hoped they would fall down from fatigue or something like that.
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#8

Post by blocho » June 20th, 2019, 2:22 pm

Good documentary. I can't say it was particularly well made, but the story was fascinating.

The comparison to They Shoot Horses, Don't They is apt. Interestingly, It's Always Sunny has done a spoof on both They Shoot Horses (Season 3 - The Gang Dances Their Asses Off) and Hands on a HardBody (Season 11 - CharDee MacDennis 2: Electric Boogaloo):
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1141458/?ref_=ttep_ep15
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt4463974/?ref_=ttep_ep1

Also, someone apparently did a musical adaptation of Hands on a Hardbody, and somehow it's been pretty successful. Reading the plot description on the wiki page reminds me of why I hate musicals:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hands_on_ ... _(musical)

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#9

Post by weirdboy » June 23rd, 2019, 3:58 am

I have been sick all week but I did see this movie previously. I thought this was a great documentary and still remember all the weird characters in this.

I don't remember if it was mentioned in the film or not, but about a decade or so after this film was shot, a contestant stepped away just before a break, walked across the street, broke into a store and stole a gun and ammunition, then killed himself when police showed up to the scene.

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#10

Post by joachimt » June 23rd, 2019, 7:39 pm

weirdboy wrote:
June 23rd, 2019, 3:58 am
I don't remember if it was mentioned in the film or not, but about a decade or so after this film was shot, a contestant stepped away just before a break, walked across the street, broke into a store and stole a gun and ammunition, then killed himself when police showed up to the scene.
Never heard of this before so tried to find the news items about it. Found out his wife sewed the car company for 600,000 dollars and the company eventually settled the case.
https://jonathanturley.org/2008/08/19/h ... r-contest/
Such a strange world we live in.
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