B.I.K.E. at the Rooftop Film Festival

Friday August 4, 2006
The roof of 210 Cook Street, Bushwick, Brooklyn
8:30 pm – Live Music by Vaz (click for info)
9:00 pm – Showtime
Running time: 1:29:00

B.I.K.E.
A feature-length documentary by Jacob Septimus & Anthony Howard

If you’ve been to underground noise rock shows, dangerous loft parties in derelict areas, or unlawful bicycle events in the streets, you might’ve noticed some of the members of the Black Label Bicycle Club. They tend to be tattooed and pierced and wear black-painted jeans-jackets. They seem to like to party and fight. And they build their own bicycles. Tall-bikes, in particular: frames welded on top of other frames so the seat rides six feet off the ground. They’re easy to spot cruising down a crowded avenue, or jousting under a bridge, carrying a long plumbing pipe and trying to knock an opponent to the tar.

But if you’ve only ever gawked from afar at these pedal-powered Hell’s Angels, you don’t know the whole story.

Granted, they’re hard to get to know. As visible as they are, the Black Label Bike Club remains a tight knit, self-protective, secretive sort of group. Anthony Howard wanted to know more, so he tried to join the club. And he made a film about it.

Howard throws himself headlong (and headfirst off more than a few tall-bikes) into the Black Label lifestyle, and, along with co-director Jacob Septimus, discovers that Black Label is about a lot more than booze, brawls and bikes. Comprised mainly of artists driven by anti-materialism and a belief that the impending apocalypse will render cars useless and bicycles in power, BLBC battles mainstream consumer culture and rival gangs for its vision of a better tomorrow. Howard’s vision, however, becomes increasingly blurred by drugs and self-destruction. In his desperate attempts to appease the group, Howard loses perspective on what the group values, and loses control of his own life.

This fascinating and gorgeously gritty film provides insight into a passionate political subculture, and exposes the darker aspects of living on the wild side.

THE VENUE:
We at Rooftop Films are thrilled to return to our outlaw days on the warehouse roofs in the East Williamsburg Industrial Park, our home from 1998-2003. If you remember those gritty old days—showing movies on top of nearly abandoned buildings with car fires and gun shots crackling in the near-distance—you won’t want to miss the opportunity to watch this renegade film on a gorgeous industrial roof on the border of Bushwick.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Copenhagen Cycle Ambassador Says Bikes Are Hot

|
If you’ve been following bicycle blogs for any amount of time at all, you’ve probably stumbled upon Mikael Colville-Andersen, who runs the blogs Copenhagenize and Copenhagen Cycle Chic. (We often feature his posts on the Streetsblog Network.) On Tuesday afternoon, he brought his inimitable style of bike advocacy (pretty spiffy, though low-key) to Columbia University. […]

Tonight: Help DOT Build a River-to-River Bike Connection

|
DOT wants 20th and 21st Streets to be Lower Manhattan’s prime river-to-river bike route. If you are interested in contributing to the development and improvement of New York City’s bicycle network, show up at this meeting tonight: The transportation committee of Manhattan Community Board 6 will hear a presentation by Josh Benson, the Department of […]

5 Borough Bike Club General Meeting – 30 Days Down Under

|
G’day Mates! Hop on your “push bike,” and join Richard Sanford for his Australian adventure. His 600 mile, 30 day journey took place during Australia’s summer months, and early into the fall, from March 10 to April 10 of 2006. His 18 days of long distance touring along Australia’s east coast had him coming face […]

Paying for a More Comfortable Transit Ride

|
Today on the Streetsblog Network, we bring you some reflections on commuter comfort from network member Cap’n Transit. As he points out in a post called "Many Segments of the Population Are Too Old for This Shit," a lot of people are put off of certain modes of transit because of the perception — and […]