Review by Randy "Mr." Smith #24 -
Magoo- The Story of Danny Chandler
First let me say that I was a Magoo fan back in the day. I only got to see him race in person once but he was impressive. That being said, I was apprehensive to watch a movie about one of my heroes now wheelchair bound. There again, I was intrigued to know more about him.
This movie opens with the current day Danny looking skinny, old, shorthaired and in that dang wheelchair. Kind of a shock to me actually. I hadn’t seen any pictures of him in many years and I still pictured the ripped bodied, longhaired star. With a little intro it goes into “this is my life” footage and commentary. That is where my thoughts changed. I enjoyed seeing the old film footage of him growing up and racing bikes of all kinds.
Danny/Magoo himself does most of the commentary and tells some interesting stories (how he got the name Magoo was one of them). Also you get to hear from many of histories greatest racing stars talk about how Magoo was a crash or win rider. Or how about how he changed the sport of Motocross by being the first to start doing double jumps and free style type moves. Stuff I had forgotten about or never knew. The Bee story is a good example. Or the Backwards story was a good one.
The film quality is mostly old Super 8 stuff so the color is a little bleached out but it has held up well for its age. Some of the commentary is a little PG 13 rated with the “F” word used a few times and also the middle finger gets flipped at the camera so watch who is around during this if you care what your kids or grandkids hear or see. The film is a little low budget but it is decent considering that.
Inevitably the life changing footage is played of Magoo’s accident. You get to hear him talk about it in detail and all of the hard times that followed. Really sad. That would have been the last we had heard of Magoo had he not had a small boy say just the right thing and cause a turn around in Magoo’s thinking. I won’t ruin the last part of this film but it ends with a happy feeling of hope for those who have been dealt a bad injury.
I watched this DVD twice and liked it much better the second time. In fact, I liked it enough to buy a copy and send it to a nice local racer who was recently paralyzed from a racing accident. I felt it might do the young man good to know he isn’t alone and doesn’t have to quit having fun with his injury.
I give it 3 spark plugs.
For more info on Danny Magoo Chandler go to www.dannymagoo.com
Review by Mark “Hollywood” Jarecki 45Q -
Magoo- The Story of Danny Chandler
I was a little apprehensive to review a DVD that featured a good man now paralyzed from Motocross. I felt like it would be too overwhelming. I was wrong in that respect. After watching this video I came away with a feeling of “Oh Wow”….. more than, …”Bummer”.
I had forgotten, (the party years), about Danny Chandlers career. If you have forgotten also, watch this video. Danny, as a racer, was more than he ever got credit for. And Danny was fast, very fast.
As many others from the left coast, this West coast kid’s career took off like a rocket. Coming up thru the amateur ranks quickly, factory rides were knocking at the door at a young age. He met all the right people during the end of the golden years of Motocross. And, he had no fear, absolutely none. I admire him for that. Danny was the first to “double” a Jump as far as I can tell. Yes, he rode full tilt and pinned. That’s what makes this DVD worth watching. Magoo is a well-choreographed mix of Pictures, Video and narration by Danny and close friends. It is done by Action Media and Danny Chandler. It is well done and moves accurately through his career. Some of the Racing Video is way good, even though it is Super 8, which was the norm for the day.
Danny rode on the edge and unfortunately paid for it. He seems like a great guy, humbled somewhat by his tragedy. There are specific scenes during the DVD with Brad Lackey in the living room with Danny where I feel Brad’s compassion and interest helps reel in some of Danny’s stories and memories which is what this DVD is naturally about, Danny. Over all “Magoo” is interesting and entertaining. Worth a view.
There are however two points I didn’t like which take away from this being an outstanding video.
One is while the old Super 8 is rolling there is way to many times the camera catches the young Danny giving the finger. This could have been edited out. No youngster needs to see that, over and over and over. Number two, some of the language is a little heavy too, Not cool in my book. It just doesn’t set a good example. Again, this could have been edited. It just takes away from the history and his glory. It adds tawdriness to the era. These two things show the lack of maturity with the production company and are the low points of the whole flick. Because of this, “Magoo” gets low marks from me instead of a respectable number.
Would I buy it for myself? Maybe. Would I let kids watch it for inspiration? No.
So, “Magoo” gets 2-1/2 spark plugs from me only because of the lack of editing.