Sunday, August 14, 2011

Strongmen: From Vaudville Onto The Big Screen

In the Golden Era of Physical Culture you had some of the strongest men on the planet doing what they did best on the stage in Vaudeville houses in America, Germany, France, India, Canada and many other countries across the globe. In that time strongmen weren't just a piece of the show, often times they were the rock stars of their era and were the headliners over many top acts. You had great men like Sandow, Saxon, Arco, The Mighty Atom, Warren Lincoln Travis, Apollon and Hackenshmidt. There were many others and the reason why is because people want to believe in the power of being strong, to be able to do anything that gets in your grasp and gets destroyed or lifted with your bare hands.

As time went on like so many things in the world, the strongmen shows started to die out and become a spot as a piece of what once was good and meaningful to the people who came to see these mighty giants give them something to believe in. Now very few people in the world know who even some of these men of strength were and the respect and love they have for them and help spread the word of what can possibly be a comeback starting with its roots all over again. With the growing of a new film just might bring that old school quality of what was is now slowly coming back to reality instead of a memory. The film is called Bending Steel: A Documentary.

The film takes place where a small strongman named Chris Shoeck has big ambitions to perform at one of the most famous strongman sites in the world, Coney Island, NY where men like The Mighty Atom, Warren Lincoln Travis and many others flourished in the realm of strength. To help get him there he is guided by another strongman who's becoming quite famous himself in recent years and that's The Viking Chris Rider. Theres a clip in the film where Rider is telling the little strongman about the crowd and how to channel his fear and overcome it with using his feats. Trust me guys, Shoeck may be short and skinny at stature but he is one strong dude and bad to the bone at what he does. Rider is no slouch either but is a towering giant with some of the powerful hands that's anyones ever seen.

When you watch the trailer of the film don't be fluttered with how great or not great it looks but picture in your mind the love and majesty of who the old-timers were about and what they represent. Its very difficult to perform certain feats of strength but in the mind its a limitless possibility of what you can achieve. That's where the real story comes to life is how far are you willing to go to push yourself with great power and great focus. You will find in this film how far one man will go to perform the biggest show of his life to solidify himself in the annals of strongman history. In one scene where Shoeck is at Coney Island you can almost hear the ghosts of past strongmen and giving him the call of a lifetime (not literally).

This film is set to release in the Summer/Fall of 2012 and I for one and hopefully many of you reading this will be seeing it with love, respect and the true honor of knowing that the strongman are coming back and Rider, Shoeck and others are the driving force of bringing back what truely belongs in this world. The world wants to believe again and now its here.

For more info go on Facebook and "Like" Bending Steel: A Documentary Film at!/pages/Bending-Steel-A-Documentary-Film/192032960849713

There you will find a few extras of the film as shooting and editing progresses and friend Rider & Shoeck. Also you will find info on how to get tix to see The Strongmen At Coney Island themselves and see Shoeck in his first performence ever.

No comments: