(Via Wireservice.ca) The story of stuntman Ken Carter — aka the Mad Canadian — and his attempted leap over the St. Lawrence in a rocket car, aiming for a bed of roses on the U.S. side was well known in 1976 — even Evel Knievel called it, “the daredevil stunt to end daredevil all stunts.” After its outcome (no spoilers, people) it was largely forgotten up until a few years ago. That’s when Vancouver musician Mark Haney decided to commemorate Carter in an album for double bass. Later, filmmaker John Bolton took the whole thing for the subject of his artistically-infused, unclassifiable documentary, Aim for the Roses, set to screen at Hot Docs starting May 1st.
Aim for the Roses is not the first documentary about Carter — the NFB, in 1981, released the feature-length doc The Devil at Your Heels by Robert Fortier, focusing on Carter’s intense preparation for the jump. You can see it (and/or get the DVD) here.
Bolton says, “As different as they were, I certainly think an element of mad genius was at work with Mark Haney and Ken Carter. And it can be contagious.”
And roses have thorns – one thing to remember when you’re aiming at them.