The Dominican Republic is located on the eastern part of the island in the Greater Antilles, Hispaniola. Many tourists all over the world enjoy local sand beaches, luxury hotels, rule of law and order. The other side of this — is the number 64,67, it is criminal rate in the Dominican Republic (maximum – 82). Also it is on the 18th place in the list of Countries With The Highest Murder Rates In The World. And exactly in the Dominican Republic young french director Aurélien Heilbronn decided to shoot documentary movie about illegal street racers.  

“Kids ignoring every law”

“A few months ago, after finishing a fashion shoot in Puerto Rico, I took advantage of the proximity to go visit Joey Rodriguez, a Dominican producer and good friend of mine. Once on the island, my curiosity was aroused by these groups of kids ignoring every law and taking all the risks to have fun on their bikes in the darkness of the night” — this was the beginning of the story. Fortunately, Heilbronn had with him camera and other equipment, and started shooting.  

“The racers were all very welcoming and showed us trust from day one. Joey told me that this was the first time they let a camera follow them. The group I followed makes a living chasing illegal races on small, customized motorcycles. They block highways and race at exhilarating speeds rarely wearing helmets. In search of adrenaline, these kids find an escape route and a way to keep boredom at bay”9-minute video is colorful and dynamic story about street racer’s life. Heroes here tell honest and sincerely: “I was afraid”, “I like the most is the crowd”, “Many times they say it’s dangerous”.

Gang, parties and violence — street racer’s reality, with its heroes, victories and faults. “Everyone drinks and everyone has a gun, but the most interesting thing was to see how these kids, who turned out to be quite nice, have created their own sort of family, an incredibly close-knit community”, – said director. 26-year old filmmaker and his team were filming Street Racers at night, only in this time racers show all their secrets. “The shoot itself  was only three days, or actually I should say nights. It was short but intense, a very unique experience. Spending time within this tight community, I felt a freedom and an energy that were equally, intimidating, intriguing and amazing. An impression I wished to capture and share with Street Racers. I hope you will enjoy the doc.”

Music by french composer Max Zippel add to this film special atmosphere. Thought it viewer feel the wind on the streets of the Dominican Republic and smell the mix from gas, chicken without salt and freedom. Viewers liked film: “People really seem to have enjoyed Street Racers”.


“I wanted this documentary to be hybrid”

“I wanted this documentary to be hybrid. I did not want to fall into the folklore of clichés; my goal was to create something cinematic with a dark and sometimes disturbing tonality” — said filmmaker. Aurélien Heilbronn was born in Paris, during studying Master’s degree in filmmaking he was also interested in cinematography and photography. This passion led him to numerous collaborations with leading personalities and talents in different industries.

For future Aurélien Heilbronn have certain plans: “Some great commercial opportunities are in the works in the advertising world that I’m really excited about but I also really want to continue working on personal projects like this one. I’m actually preparing a new documentary taking place in another but very different underground world, this time, in the States”.


Illegal Street Racers In The World

Not far from Dominican Republic, in the USA, illegal street racers is tangible problem. In Baltimore over the past decade have existed riding dirt bikes. It’s illegal to ride dirt bike on Baltimore streets. In the film are witness’s testimonies, police videos. Many local kids want to enter in this community, here they search a sense of living and participation in some kind of family. About them Lotfy Nathan filmed in 2013 documentary. “12 O’Clock Boys” open insight into the street racer’s world in Baltimore. Popularity of this group is raising, as noise complaints and endangerment of citizens.

This is not a situation unique to the United States. Also in Seattle at night you can hear roars of a motor — there are over 200 street racers converge for illegal races.

Subscribe to WM Daily. Be In Touch With Rebellious Voices