Plot: This one doesn’t have a traditional narrative per se, so the movie does build up to the first live performance by the Nitro Circus crew, as well as provide some background on the performers. In essence, this is a bigger, large scale version of the Nitro Circus television show, which means a lot of stunts on vehicles of all kinds, from semi trucks to big wheels. The movie was created to be seen in 3D and it does add a lot to the whole experience, but it is also still a lot of fun in good old 2D. So buckle up and hope no one dies, as the Nitro Circus takes you a tour of the world, risking their lives at every stop to chase adrenaline.
Entertainment Value: As a fan of the Nitro Circus show, I couldn’t wait to see this movie in theaters and the 3D experience was a lot of fun. I’ve since revisited it in 2D and it holds up, provided you appreciate wild, death defying stunts that happen just because these folks love that adrenaline rush. The stunts are varied and offer a nice assortment of vehicles, stunt performers, and scenarios, some simple and others more involved, but all worth a look. One moment it is just the crew trying to pull off a double backflip on big wheels, the next they’ve traveled to an exotic locale to attempt some complex stunt, so it is a welcome variety of content here. I love the opening sequence, as it is so massive in scale and insanely kinetic, with some excellent stunt choreography that sets the tone quite well. There’s no shortage of stunts either, as this movie is generous with the hair raising content involved.
As there’s no real narrative, we just kind of jump from stunt to stunt, but the movie is smart about that approach. The movie introduces each stunt performer as they pop up in the film, just a quick burst that lets us know a little about them, so they’re not just unknown personas. I also like that Nitro Circus invests a little time in most of the scenes to set up the stunt’s purpose, which can be some world record attempt or just someone wanting to provide crazy footage. The flashes of before and after footage really opens up the movie I think, as it makes it a more personal experience, instead of just a parade of eye popping stunts. But even so, this isn’t likely to appeal to a wide audience, as it is mostly stunt performances and even with the added personal touches, isn’t even close to a traditional cinema experience. But if you like Nitro Circus, Jackass style stunts with vehicles, or daredevils, this movie is a lot of fun.