“Stuntman” is the latest documentary heading to Disney+ and tells the story of Eddie Braun, a professional stuntman in Hollywood He has worked on many great films throughout his career and has survived hellacious car crashes explosions, high falls, and death-defying leaps.
During the early part of the documentary, introduces us to who Eddie is, telling us about his life as a stuntman, and there is loads of great footage of his daring adventures that is amazing to watch. We get to see him take part in some crazy car crashes, taking huge dives off bridges and blowing stuff up—all the things you’d want to see in a film about a stuntman.
But then the documentary then shifts to telling the story of his own personal project of recreating the infamous Snake River Canyon rocket jump, which almost killed Evel Knievel when he attempted to do it.
We see Eddie full of excitement about this new project, and it’s even given its own live special on Fox, but then the wheels come off as they get cold feet, setting the project back years, as he struggles to find a new home to broadcast the dangerous attempt and just as import, find the money to do so.
That’s where this documentary comes into its main topic, as this film chronicles the events that led up to the daring rocket jump attempt and includes the actual rocket launch over the canyon as well. The son of Evel Knievel is also involved in the project, which I thought helped with telling some stories of the original rocket jump and connecting the film to the original stuntman.
The actual rocket jump scenes near the end of the documentary are really great and seeing him blast off over the canyon is thrilling, with multiple camera angles and some superb ariel shots. With this documentary being released on Disney+, there isn’t any real fear that he doesn’t complete his mission, since if he did, I doubt Disney would have purchased it for the streaming platform.
And that leads to one of the issues about this film; the actual jump took place over five years ago and even the documentary was originally shown for the first time at a film festival in 2018, and it has taken over 3 years for it to finally be released to the public. Throw in the fact that 2 major US television networks didn’t want to air the live special, kinda gives off the vibe that the rocket launch wasn’t going to be that popular with today’s audiences. Literally, right now, we’ve got two billionaires shooting themselves into space, with their own rockets, making this attempt to cross a canyon look a little outdated.
I enjoyed the first 10 to 15 minutes, where I learned a bit about what it takes to be a stuntman in Hollywood and enjoyed the last 10 to 15 minutes about the rocket jump. The hour in between about building the rocket and prepping for the rocket, wasn’t that interesting and I was finding it very hard to resist not hitting the fast forward button. If I wasn’t writing a review for the film, I would have.
“Stuntman” has some interesting moments, but way too much time in between, trying to set up the grand finale and I also don’t think Eddie Braun had enough charisma to keep the film’s length, he seems like a nice guy and does some amazing things, but I just didn’t click with him to care what happened.
I would, however, recommend if you have a Disney+ subscriber, to check it out, because you might feel differently to me, and ultimately, if you feel it’s getting a little slow in the middle, just fast forward to the good stuff! Because honestly, the big rocket car jump over the canyon does make this documentary worth watching, especially if you loved Evel Knievel, you’ll love this.
Rating 2.5 out of 5.
“Stuntman” is coming to Disney+ on Friday 23rd July.
Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom.