If someone were to stumble upon the Race of Gentlemen in Wildwood, New Jersey, that person might think they had stepped into the Mad Max universe. The annual motorcycle and hot rod race attracts 15,000 bikers and spectators from across the country. Over the course of one exciting day, riders race at speeds up to 70 miles per hour in vehicles exclusively made before the year 1950.
“These guys created a world of their own,” said Daniel Soares, director of the short documentary The Normal People. “It’s like a huge film set.” Soares’ film is indeed a visual spectacle, evoking the dystopian steampunk aesthetic of George Miller’s franchise. But even more interesting are the characters who inhabit it—characters Soares calls “slightly crazy, but in a good way.”