The Grand Tour: Eurocrash is the next journey from the comedy travel series available on Amazon Prime. The series stars Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May, following them on an unusual road trip in unusual cars, traveling across Eastern Europe from Poland to Slovenia.
The interesting concept of this road trip is the apparent lack of real idea for the destination and the journey, Most Grand Tour journeys have a plot to them or a theme that serves as the backbone to always fall back on. But this one has an odd remit — no one has done it before. The crew seem to have picked two random locations on the basis that it is unique, and that its matched by the cars they choose. Three vehicles were selected with the idea that they are rare, special, and just unusual. The special follows the format of the big, movie-length episodes that have become the norm for the Grand Tour. This is always an engaging idea and the presenters have the chemistry to make it work.
What becomes clear is that without a particular goal or a definitive purpose, the film loses its way. It’s still entertaining. This is a trio that is always watchable when they are together. But ideas appeared sparse and the final third stutters in particular. The first challenge set up carries with it the culture of the region and has a distinct concept in mind. But beyond that, there is a feeling of “roll with it” that stems from not bringing a specific section of motoring to the table. The cars themselves are so obscure that they don’t fit a genre individually, but that is part of their charm.
The Grand Tour: Eurocrash is another fantastic example of how this production team creates characters. You have not just the now famous personas of Hammond, Clarkson, and May, generated over decades, but also the vehicles they drive. The real soul of the special comes from the trio at the helm. Still throwing insults at each other, there is a general lightness to the tone that makes the show easy to settle into. The irritation towards each other appears genuine by the end too, adding a narrative throughout the road trip.
And through editing and the enthusiasm of the presenters, the cars can be adored. Especially the three that are on display for this episode. Wacky in their designs, there has rarely been a set of cars so different alongside each other. They vary in age, design, and purpose. Due to this disparity, the group spends a lot of time separated.
What sets the Grand Tour aside from other motoring shows is the budget allocated to it and the magnificence of its filmmaking. The show uses the highest quality camera available and looks intensely cinematic at all times. This allows the shots to take in the full depth of the phenomenal scenery. Hammond, Clarkson, and May visit medieval towns and ancient mountains of Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, and Slovenia, and the film cameras capture their magnitude superbly. These specials really have been crafted into epic adventures and they look like one as well.
This has always been a show, either through Top Gear or The Grand Tour, that is endlessly carried by those at the helm of it. They have the ability to make any idea entertaining and worth watching. After numerous individual ventures, they effortlessly slot back together and continue where they left off. Whilst the story of this adventure may be lacking, that is not the case for the countries the trio visit. All four bring their spectacular visuals and histories, stunningly presented through a jaw-dropping production. But it just feels like the conceit for the show is extremely thin. The cars are wonderful characters, oozing personality and the individualism that this episode was striving for in particular. But if this conceit of choosing destinations at random is to continue, there needs to be something to energise the final part of the adventure to prevent is fizzling out.
The Grand Tour: Eurocrash is available on Amazon Prime Video.
The Grand Tour: Eurocrash
It just feels like the conceit for the show is extremely thin. The cars are wonderful characters, oozing personality and the individualism that this episode was striving for in particular. But if this conceit of choosing destinations at random is to continue, there needs to be something to energise the final part of the adventure to prevent is fizzling out.