“I grew up listening to elders talking about their journeys through Europe. Journeys that took months. But I come from a generation where that culture was long lost. A generation where fast, low-cost airlines have taken over,” reflects Portugese slab hunter Nic Von Rupp about the concept for his latest movie Rail Road where he travels via train to the corners of Europe.
“People from my generation want to experience everything at once,” he says. “Don’t get me wrong, it’s awesome to be able to on the in the four corners of the world in less then a week, but you gotta be able to turn that fast-forward mode off as well in order to really embrace the places you go to. Trains do that to you. They dictate your tempo. They shape your path. You meet people you wouldn’t normally meet. You see places that roads wouldn’t lead you to. And you get to actually sit back and enjoy the scenery.”
Spot guide: Spain + Portugal
This latest outing has been directed by Mr Von Rupp's longtime friend and collaborator Gustavo Immigrante – and it is a beautifully crafted film that spanned two years and a dozen or more trips, taking in the furthest reaches of the Old Continent.
And of the train experience, Nic says: “It’s super de-modernised. Trains are pretty shitty. The toilet stinks. The food is weird. The beers are out of date. The people are weird. But that’s the best part. It’s different. It’s old. You’re up in the mountains with no cell service and you’ve got to have conversations and play cards. You can look out the window and relax without worrying about the road.” The only downside being getting your whips onto a stuffed train without any issues. Anyway, set aside 20 mins of your time, pull up a stool and watch Rail Road above.