I'm not crying. I'm not. I'm just not. Avert your eyes. Don't look at me. I'm not crying. I'm not crying. If anything, you're the one crying. Yeah. You're crying. And that audible sniffing you can clearly hear coming from my direction is just... it's just... hayfever. Yeah. Hayfever. Leave it, alright. Leave it. I'm fine. I'm not crying. These sunglasses are here to protect my eyes from the bright glare of the computer screen, obviously. I'm not crying. I'm not crying.
A beautiful true story. Beautifully shot. In beautiful locations. With beautiful music. 'RJ Ripper', a film directed by Joey Schusler, tells the incredible tale of Rajesh (RJ) Magar; a Kathmundu kid who loved bikes so much he welded his own one from junkyard scraps.
The emotional and uplifting documentary charts RJ's beginnings riding a clunker he bought off his friend, and explores how he overcame his humble start in life to conquer the Himalayas and become Nepal's fastest rider (he's now a four-time national champion). We don't want to give too much away but you should be prepared to be inspired/blub uncontrollably like your dad at the end of Cool Runnings at various moments during its running time.
Whatever else RJ goes on to achieve in downhill mountain biking, and the film suggests he hopes to overcome visa problems and pit his wits against the finest Europe and North American can offer, the fact that this dude dreamed of making a living out of bikes and then achieved that against all the odds is a truly inspirational thing to behold.
"Mountain biking is part of my soul," RJ says in the film's opening. You're crying already.
Eagle eyed Mpora readers will no doubt already be familiar with Rajesh from that time Dan Milner went riding with him for a piece we published in 2016. As Milner put it back then, in reference to the Nepalese youngster's stamina, RJ has "lungs from another dimension."