Three Part Mini-Series, Night 1
Air Date: Monday, September 5, 2016, 9PM E/P on Discovery Channel
Rating: 4 Stars
“Like an explosion between your legs!” – William “Bill” Harley
To feel the rush of exhilaration as the wind whips your face while cruising down a lonesome highway; the feeling of total freedom engulfs you like waves crashing down. These are just some of the sensations you experience when riding a motorcycle. Although, I’ve only ever been a passenger on the back of motorcycle (not a Harley-Davidson), the thrill of hopping onto a two-wheeled machine is unlike anything else.
Based on the true story of the rough and humble beginnings of one of the most legendary and notable motorcycle manufacturers in the world, this well-known tale is told with exemplary acting and captivating dialogue in Harley and the Davidsons. “Amazing Machine” is engaging and intriguing. As I watched, I became completely invested in the lives of William “Bill” Harley (Raymond Aramayo), and brothers Arthur “Art” (Bug Hall) and Walter Davidson (Michiel Huisman). The way these three actors interact like true friends felt so organic. The chemistry, the bonding, and the emotions transcend the screen.
Set in the early 1900s, “Amazing Machine,” introduces us to friends Bill and Art who start off on an amazing journey together, creating something extraordinary. While the “motorized bicycle” had already been invented, Bill and Art go above and beyond with their idea of what this machine can become. But Harley and the Davidsons isn’t simply about the awesome motorcycles of the Harley-Davidson company; it’s about the journey each of the men take to achieve their dreams.
Bill, the engineer behind the Harley-Davidson engines, comes from a meager immigrant family. All he wants to do is help provide for his family and go to college. When an opportunity arrives, he faces a difficult decision in choosing which path to take.
Art, the salesman of the group, also comes from a poor immigrant background and is sort of the black sheep of the family. He doesn’t think you should have to break your back to earn a wage, but coming from strong Irish roots and a family that believes in hard work, his radical ideas are not always met with ardor.
Walter, the risk taker, has just lost his land to unscrupulous railroad developers and receives a letter from his brother Art to invest in a brand new venture. When Walter takes the prototype motorcycle for a ride, he is completely transformed and invigorated by the possibilities of what this invention can do―not only for his family but for himself. Walter chooses to ride at all the motorcycle competitions, but at his own peril in pursuit of fame and glory.
Each man must figure out how to cope with various circumstances and obstacles thrust in their path, while the bonds of family and friendship are tested; but we all know how this story ends. In watching Harley and the Davidsons, you go along for an exhilarating ride with three men who sacrificed their money, family, reputations, and their lives to pursue a dream. It’s not all triumph and happy endings, and there are enemies that want to see these men fail. Harley and the Davidsons allows the audience a chance to live vicariously through these three brave and dedicated souls. Don’t you want to take a ride?
Tune into the epic three night mini-series event:
- Monday, September 5 – 9PM ET/PT – EPISODE 1 – “Amazing Machine”– Bill Harley and brothers Walter and Arthur Davidson found the Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Company. But competition is fierce, and Walter puts his life at risk in deadly races to beat industry powerhouse, Indian Motorcycles.
- Tuesday, September 6 – 9PM ET/PT – EPISODE 2 – “Race to the Top” – Harley-Davidson must rejoin the racing community if the business is to survive. Distracted by their race to the top, the founders leave themselves vulnerable to a devastating and unforeseen threat to the survival of their company.
- Wednesday, September 7 – 9PM ET/PT – EPISODE 3 – “Legacy” – The Great Depression ravages America and cripples the motorcycle industry. With their company on the brink of ruin, Walter, Arthur, and Bill flout conventional wisdom by embarking on their most ambitious and expensive design yet.
For more on the show, go to http://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/harley-and-the-davidsons/
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Photos: ©2016 Discovery Channel. All Rights Reserved.
© 2016, Judy Manning. All rights reserved.
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