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Indy Film Fest: ‘The Race of Gentlemen’ ★★1/2

by on July 10, 2017
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By Bob Bloom

Forget the fast and the furious. Instead, spend some quality time with the dedicated and the driven who participate in “The Race of Gentlemen.”

This short documentary — it runs a bit more than an hour — looks at men who participate in an annual gathering of vintage hot-rodders who meet in Wildwood, N.J.

These are men who love old vehicles — cars and motorcycles — that they have rebuilt, refurbished or resurrected for the joy and love of a bygone era.

The movie is being shown as part of the Indy Film Fest, which runs from July 13 to 23.

The participants in this friendly race seek neither fame nor glory. They are blue-collar guys who love displaying their handiwork and sharing some friendly competition along the beaches of New Jersey.

They are of varying ages and come from all over the country — and the world. They prefer the quaint sounds of a noisy motor that sputters once in a while to the clean roar of a modern racer.

These racers take pride in their achievements — mixing, matching and adapting parts from various vintage vehicles to create a car or motorcycle with their own hands.

Passionate about their hobby and their creations, at times, they speak a language that is almost foreign, as they discuss the parts and components they have assembled to fuel new life into their machines.

Their cars and motorcycles don’t race at three-digit speeds, but the drivers love their vehicles as if they were fast enough to qualify for the Indianapolis 500.

“The Race of Gentlemen” is somewhat repetitious as driver after driver affectionately — and in technical detail — describes their creations and fondness for hot-rodding.

It is fascinating to hear how many of these men were influenced by their fathers who either built or raced cars.

Glitz and glamour are as alien to these men as is racing for fame and fortune.

To them, the love of the sport — and their vehicle — is the pinnacle of perfection. And at its heart, that is what “The Race of Gentlemen” is all about.

Bob Bloom is a member of the Indiana Film Journalists Association. His reviews appear at ReelBob ( and Rottentomatoes ( He also reviews Blu-rays and DVDs. He can be reached by email at or on Twitter @ReelBobBloom.

2½ stars out of 4
Not rated



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