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  • Anyone looking to learn more about the development of skateboarding should find Dogtown and Z-Boys adequate research material. This is not to be confused with Lords of Dogtown, that sorry Hollywood attempt to cash in on the success of the original Dogtown revival.

    Directed by Stacey Peralta, a former Z-Boys himself as well as pro skater and mastermind behind the 80s Bones Brigade, and co-written with skateboarding photojournalist Craig Stecyk, this documentary traces how a group of surfing kids from Southern California's mean streets (known as Dogtown) who formed the Z-Boys skateboard team (actually there was one girl--Peggy Oki) revolutionized skateboarding. The film contains interviews from nearly all of the Z-Boys (Chris Cahill's whereabouts are unknown) with the most noteable being bad ass Tony Alva and the youngest, Jay Adams, who's talents (along with Perlata) seemed to transcend the rest of the teams. There are interviews of the team's (and the Dogtown shop) founders, surfboard designer Jeff Ho, Skip Engbloom, and Craig Stecyk. There are also interviews of folks like Tony Hawk (obviously), Ian McKaye (Fugazi), and Henry Rollins, who were young kids in the 70s when Dogtown was making it's influence on skateboarding (skateboarding was a whole other context in previous years as the documentary explains).

    It really shows you not only who the Dogtown team was and how they formed, but why their style changed not only skateboarding tricks (pool skating became immensley popular, and thus gave way to vert skating), but also facilitated the sport (though not into the extreme commercialism it is today) as more than just the fleeting fad it had been earlier as these surfing kids who's waves ran out in the early morning needed ways to spend their time and eventually got into skateboarding. The days of Russ Howell and Alan Gelfand were long over as the Dogtown, at least through the publicity of their skate team, paved the way for the new generation of skaters. Because Dogtown got all the attention, they were able to push skating to the next step.

    It's a great documentary in the way that it is put together, though Stacey Peralta always knew how to do this even when producing the Bones Brigade mini movies/skate demos like "Ban This" and "Search for Animal Chin." Narrated by Sean Penn, the film is accompanied by a fantastic soundtrack, contains lots of terrific archive footage, and lots of interview to give you a genuine feel of who the Z-Boys were and how they made their mark on skateboarding.
  • My skateboarding career ended in 1974 when my two-by-four skateboard with steel roller-skate wheels hit a rock and I tumbled, for days it seemed, down the sidewalk outside my parent's house in Boston. By the time the cast came off my arm, summer was gone.

    But I have always admired the X-games types and surfers especially. I think I spent the first month after I moved to Southern California on the beaches and piers watching the surfers, bemoaning that fact that I had missed my calling. It's the sort of thing you should learn young, before the horrible senses of self-preservation and self-awareness burrow in. Or else at best, you'll be so worried about not getting hurt or laughed at, you'll wind up looking like a trained bear.

    I always admired how a good surfer seems to not care about anything but that moment, that wave, that experience. At one with the forces of nature. A good surfer makes it look like there is nothing else but that wave right there, and the way you interact with it. There's a lot of Zen in it to me.

    This documentary outlines how a few young folks took the surfing concepts and extended them to skateboarding. Ramps, downgrades, low sweeping curves while interacting with the cement waves beneath their feet. In their day and time, this was all new. radical. Prior to the Zephyr Skate team the idea apparently was to go as fast as you could in a straight line on a skateboard, hence my long "Evel Knievel at Caesers Palace" like tumble down the front walk.

    This film is a look back through time, to an America before EVERYTHING was labeled, tagged, marketed, and jam-forced down our throats as "Extreme". (Seriously, what's so "extreme" about an "Extreme value meal" at Taco Bell? Other than the fact that it is an extreme hazard to your colon...)

    Watch this film and watch the birth of 'extreme sports'. Before there was an X-games, before Boom-boom Huck-Jam, before Crusty Demons, before the ASA...there were these young street urchins who created 'extreme sports' without really trying. They were just doing it for the purity, the pure pleasure, of skateboarding in the sun with friends.

    I hope they get a cut of the 'extreme' money out there. Goodness knows they don't get the credit they deserve. Maybe this film can correct that.

    Excellent film with a great soundtrack, a portrait of a Southern California, indeed an America, that no longer exists.

    I don't care for Sean Penn but he does a decent job narrating.
  • If you have ever been, has a friend, or a kid that is or was into skating at one time, then watch this flick!. I have seen it several times and I get something new out of it every time that I see it. It reminded me of why I got into skating in the first place (a long time ago) . It reminded me of what skating brings to a person and I have found will also help a person who doesn't understand why skaters, well, skate. Sure there is a very dark side to the whole seen, which the movie does touch on slightly. But it tends to focus more on what is at the core of skating. Just a person on a board, doing it because they love to do it. This movie was so inspirational to me that I'm now skating once again (I'm 32) and I haven't been this happy with my self in years….. Give this one a go, you will not be disappointed.
  • First off, the movie was great. It did what it was supposed to do.. and that was to tell the story of a certain time, place and people. Maybe the Z-Boys weren't choir boys (and one girl) but they were real people (kids) and they took the whole idea of skateboarding to new levels... I absolutely enjoyed this movie.. not only because I am from Dogtown (Venice/ Mar Vista/ S.M (south of Wilshire)), used to skateboard (I sucked) and that I dealt with the Z-Boys a few times when they were using my aunt's pool and were scaring my grandma.. but because this movie was about them (the Z-Boys) and the time and the place. Sure there was a semi skateboard culture in the 60's that died out pretty quickly... but the Z-Boys restarted the whole skateboard thing again.. and not only did they restart it; they resurrected and recreated it. Nowadays it is almost a regular thing to see some guy flying out of a pool or a half pipe getting air, etc.. But back then it was something new. They revolutionized the whole thing. There were electric guitars and guitar players before Hendrix but he took it to a whole different level and what he left in his wake is the same thing the Z-Boys left in their's.

    To the people who seem to want to criticize the movie or the Z-Boys for talking about themselves.. well the movie was about them.. Remember what it is like to be young and invincible.. and to revolutionize something that they loved by just doing what they loved.. sure it is easy to get an ego.. just ask a kid who learns how to finally play a Hendrix song on a guitar... it is the same thing except the Z-Boys defined the revolution that was to come. They were young, brash and from a place that was a slum by the shore. Sure it was wrong to trash and terrorize people who came to their beach or whatever.. but by the same token.. people from this side of the hill would get a lot of abuse when they went to the Valley or other areas. That doesn't make it right but it does make it what it was. There was a sectional divide in the greater L.A. area. The Z-Boys just happened to be at the forefront of the beach wars.

    The Z-Boys rocked and they weren't perfect angels but they were real.. look what happened to Jay Adams.. They were part of the times and places that was the L.A. beach scene.

    Finally, I think the style of this movie fit the subject very well. Stacy Peralta was part of the Z-Boys and he did this film as a tribute to what they were all about. It was a rebellion not for the sake of ego but for the sake of something they all enjoyed doing. The camera work, the (killer) soundtrack and the memories were great. The best part, though, might have been the fact that they themselves seemed to document their own history with still pictures and film.

    To quote the Surf Punks, "My beach, my waves, my chicks, go home".

    Rock on!!!!
  • I never surfed or skateboarded but I still found this documentary fascinating. I accidentally stumbled on it while channel surfing (not sidewalk surfing) and watched it a second time later in the day. The Z-Boys made me think of the early days of rock and roll when young kids with no formal musical training basically "invented" rock and roll as they went along.. It seems the Z-Boys did the same with skateboarding.
  • Being in the suburbs of New York when the Z-Boys were creating history in Dogtown, I was only exposed to a glimpse of what was going on. I had a P-O-S Black Knight skateboard with clay wheels. It is long gone, and on the ash heap of my personal life. But I never forgot. It's like watching long-lost brothers and friends, and it hits me right where I live. I cannot watch this film enough. Every time I view it, some other aspect rises to the top, some other viewpoint come into sharp focus. The vintage footage, the incredible stills, the current personalities intermeshed with the vivid shadows of the brightly lit past, the heartfelt and not over-done narrative, all beautifully edited together in such a way as to make a landmark documentary of a genuine slice of American history. In the words of Glen Friedman - "It was F-ing unbelievable."
  • A close-up look at the birth of skate board culture in Southern California, Dogtown and Z-Boys has attitude to burn, just like the sport it documents. Directed by Stacy Peralta, one of the legends of the sport, it captures the punk rock spirit of skate boarding, and perfectly places it into context within the boundaries of time (the 1970s) and location (a neighbourhood between Santa Monica and Venice, California). Even if you are not a fan you'll be fascinated by the story, which is told using a combination of narration, stills, great vintage 1970s skate boarding footage and new interviews with all the key players. Sean Penn provides the narration, and adds a flair all of his own. The opposite of stodgy, Penn speaks to the audience not at them, sounding like someone sitting at a bar telling the tale. At one point in mid-sentence he coughs, pauses for a moment and then continues. It's this kind of approach that gives this movie its edge.
  • Back in the day, I was one of the RN's in the Emergency Rooms, these skaters would occasionally land in. They were not treated well, and some of it was brought on by their asocial personalities- but we all knew they were a talented bunch of "wonderkids" even then. They deserved better care than they received, I'm afraid. They had "attitude" in spades.

    I'm so glad I caught this documentary on IFC tonight- it will be on again at 1 am and I'll be watching again!

    Little attention was given to them until the rich dying kid was able to talk his parents into draining the pool- and the film really highlights that as the taking off point....it was an amazing time, and deserved to be recorded. Stacy Peralta is due all the praise heaped on him, and long may those Z-Boys enjoy their memories and contribution to the real sport of skateboarding. As for the few "sour grape" reviews contained herein, there always were and there always will be "wannabees" and hangers-on who never do more than dream...the Z-boys lived it, breathed it, were it.

    Nice to see the vintage films and even the lone girl, "Peggy" who was so talked about as being the only female to win their respect.

    Thanks to IFC I get to really take the occasional drug-free head trip of my youth and relive the heart pounding excitement again.
  • This documentary struck a great emotional chord with me. Just reminded me of what it felt like to be a kid in the 70s trying to figure out who you were. Yeah, the men/women talk about their teenage selves like they were superheroes - but that's exactly how I like to remember those years in my life, too. ;) And I didn't do anything quite as cool as those kids did.

    I love this movie because it shows the people and the developing sport of skateboarding as being truly products of their environment. Where you grow up, what you see, and who you hang with - these things create you. It was great to see people looking back on that, acknowledging it, accepting it, and taking pride in it. Yeah, maybe a little too much pride in some cases...

    Interesting to see where everyone ended up at the end.

    Oh, and a good soundtrack.

    I bought the movie and will watch it many times over the years, I'm sure.
  • teddyryan14 July 2004
    Warning: Spoilers
    DOGTOWN AND Z-BOYS rocks. It infuses awesome 70s music with breathtaking shots of So Cal kids with long straight hair. I couldn't get enough of Stacey Peralta's look at a culture of renegade skateboarders that took American culture by storm. Even if they weren't quite as ground breaking as they claimed to be, the Z-Boys are a privelage to watch. And the photographs. Wow-wee. I got nostalgic for an era that I wasn't even around for. Something about youth and those LA palms. A great film for anyone who wants to rock. Also, loved the Led Zeppelin. Obscure track from Presence. Stacey, keep on makin' 'em, man!

    On a side note: Adams (the most talented of the group) fell victim to the stardom and (POSSIBLE SPOILER!!!) is interviewed from a Hawaii prison. He is the one z-boy who fell at the waste side.
  • I'm sure glad I finally took the time to rent and watch this documentary! It really brings back a lot of fond memories of skateboarding when I was a surfer kid back in the early seventies. Everything in this movie was familiar to me, the surfing, the skating, the names of the skaters, the equipment they were riding. As I watched all these kids ripping and doing the moves we strived so hard to emulate, I could feel the old stoke returning to my veins. Peralta (a great skater himself) really captures the electricity and energy of the time and the place. I'm 47 years old now, but after seeing this movie I'm so fired up I think I may have to get a board and get back out there (wearing a helmet and lots of pads, of course).
  • I have seen this movie twice now on cable. The first time I saw it, it caught me by suprise. The skaters I was seeing were the guys we followed in the pages of Skateboarder magazine back in the late 70's. These were the guys we copied and tried to become while skating. I am glad that a film was finally made that gives an accurate account of how it all came to be. I am almost 40 years old now and I guess a pretty uptight kind of guy with all of life's problems, however; this film did a great job of taking me back. Back to the vacant pools, the backyard halfpipes and the road trips to Cherry Hill NJ. I suspect that in order to really understand this movie and appreciate it, you had to live it. Otherwise, it probably won't have the impact on you as it did me. But for those of you (and you know who you are), who did live it, you know exactly what I am talking about! In any event, I don't care who you are, if you get a chance to see this movie...do it! I give thanks to the Z-Boys of Dogtown for the memories of my youth and thanks to Stacy for making this movie! JOB WELL DONE!
  • Let me say first of all that I spent a total of about two minutes of my life on a skateboard before I realized I was totally uncoordinated. I've always thought it was cool watching cats that know how to get extreme on 'em do their stuff, but I've never been a skateboarder and have never really followed the sport. That being said, I thought this was a very informative and interesting documentary. Some reviewers have said that these dudes were sort of waving their own flag a bit, but what the hell? It looks to me that these guys probably deserve as much credit as anyone for giving the skateboarding world a jolt and they've provided some good footage of their innovations to back it up. It's great the way viewers are allowed to see these guys both then and now and the footage they shot while they were teens growing up in California provides some interesting nostalgia that goes a bit beyond the sport of skating. I never would have realized where extreme skating came from, but this films sort of ties all the pieces together and gives us an informative documentary. I'm sure it's at least a tad biased, but aren't all documentaries? Worth watching for anyone interested in the sport or, as in my case, anyone who grew up in the 1970's.
  • vincent-275 September 2003
    this is one of the greatest documentaries i've ever seen along with "Dark Days". I have skated for maybe an hour my entire life, and I still love this movie. Peralta and his excellent editor captured the feeling and atmosphere perfectly, helped in part with some incredible archival footage. Tony Alva is one of the coolest individuals in existence. Love those knee high striped sport socks, you rock Tony!

    Not only is this movie a visual feast, but the soundtrack has to be one of the best in history, if you're into 70's rock. Buy the DVD, you won't regret it.
  • I don't skate...I can't skate... I don't really care about skating, but I loved this "movie"!! It may not have been all that objective, but that didn't really matter...you couldn't help thinking- Damn, those kids were COOL!! However, it also made me a little sad, because I WANNA SKATE AND I WANNA SURF NOW...but...I'm a girl...and I'm too old...even though they say in the movie, that you are never too old...I still think 21 is too old!!! :o)

    It looks so liberating...they look so free...

    Someone said in a review, that if you didn't like skating, you wouldn't like this movie, but that is NOT true... It wasn't just about skating...it was about a feeling... That might also be the reason, why it was not objective...it was about these kids and how loved this sport...how they felt when they were together... Anyway, that's how I saw it...!
  • This film moved me at age 39 in the same way that all the footage and coverage of Dogtown affected me when I was 13. For all of those who criticized the self promotion of the Z boys interviewed, they have the last laugh on you. That was their whole deal, "we're better than all of you and here's why....(insert footage of the smoothest pool carve imaginable)" This was a film to tell their story and that was their story whether you like it or not. It was THEIR opinion of their skating that mattered..... not yours or mine. I thought the film captured their attitude and influence exactly as I remembered it in the 70's. The reality is that they DID revolutionize skateboarding, they WERE the impetus behind extreme sports and they DID inject a cultural paradigm that reached into every corner of americana. This movie gave rebirth to images of Bertleman on a wave and Alva and Jay Adams ripping up the coping that WAS the California Dream to an entire culture of young american teenagers that just wanted to have fun and get rad! As I watched this film I realized that it was these images that I lived with every day until I was old enough to move out and back down to So Cal after my family had moved to Nor Cal when I was five. Until I could get back, my buddies and I built and thrashed ramp after ramp, searched for every empty pool possible and mimicked everything Stecyk covered about these guys. We are all educated and have family's and careers now but this film reminds me who I was at that age and why I still surf. This is an inspired film that anyone who has an interest in pop culture, extreme sports, the 70's or even just good documentary film making will enjoy completely. Whenever it comes on cable I can't change the channel. Kudos to Stacy Peralta for making a beautiful piece of art!
  • DBPVI27 February 2003
    I remember when skateboarding had it's rebirth in the 70s. I begged my parents for money to by a second-hand skateboard from a friend. It was a piece of junk, complete with clay wheels and everything. I also remember reading Skateboarder Magazine and being both completely impressed and totally terrified of the Dogtown crew. Skating never became a way of life for me, but in some ways it has always been a part of my life, whether it is using a board for transportation or just having a bunch of friends that skate.

    This film is a brilliant documentary of the real birth of modern day skating. Watching this crew turn skating from the flat boring hobby it was into the vertical lifestyle it has become had me sitting slack-jawed for 90 minutes.

    It's amazing that enough footage from this period still exists to have created this film, and thank god for that. The footage is brilliant. It gave me the feeling of watching an old Buster Keaton film: I've seen some of the tricks Keaton did repeated countless times in other films since then, but when you go back and see the first person to perform that trick it's amazing that, not only were they the first person to try it successfully, but that they lived through it and made it seem effortless. That's the feeling this film gave me. Yeah, I've seen people skate pools before, but to watch the FIRST people skating pools and inventing the tricks that eventually became the basics of modern skating is like watching the facade of the house fall on Keaton, leaving him standing safely in the frame of a window. It's absolutely brilliant to watch something that, up until that point, had never been tried before, but since, has been tried by almost everyone.

    This film is beautiful to watch and incredible to listen to. The soundtrack is one of the best I've ever heard in a film. This is a film that will appeal to people whether they like skating or not. I've talked to a couple of friends of mine who made their girlfriends sit through this film after heavy protest, and they all said that their girlfriends were mesmerized by the end of the film and loved it as much as they did.

    As for the previous comments on this board that complain about the film being too self congratulatory, I think that's an unfair disparagement. I liked seeing these guys get excited about their past. They created something that influenced their sport and changed it forever. They have the right to pat themselves on the back. They were stars for doing what they loved to do. Most of these guys/girls never achieved the staggering success Tony Hawk enjoys today, but that kind of success wasn't available to skaters then. Sure, they had some success, but more importantly, they have been able to live a life doing what they love to do, and, as we see in the end, almost all of them still surf, skate or work in the surf/skate industry. How many of us can say that we have been able to live our lives and have been successful by breaking all the rules and doing what we love to do? They can. My hat's off to the Dogtown and Z-Boys for being themselves and changing the world of skateboarding forever.
  • I saw this movie on the lowlands festival (23, 24, 25th of august) after a friend of mine said this is a very cool movie about the history of skating. I didn't now what to expect from this movie. Was it recorded by a couple of skaters who thought they could do a couple of cool tricks, or was it a documentary about skating.

    So i went in, after waiting for about an hour, whit out any expectations.

    This movie is really a nice piece of work about the beginning of skateboarding. It started with the zephyr team, who where a fine group of surfers. This is taking place in a not so nice area to live in. At a certain point the waves are not so good any more to surf on. So they try something else. skateboarding was a fact.

    If you were a part of the zephyr team in that time, you where one of the cool guys/girls. Because a lot of people saw an escape from the place they were living in with the zephyr team. So they were trying all there new tricks now on a skateboard.

    In no time skateboarding was popular again. There were a couple of competitions and one national competition. The zephyr team was taking part on several competition and also the national one. But what they were doing on there skateboards was unbelievable. But the jury didn't now how to judge them. So they put the whole skateboarding world on it's head.

    Anyway i can tell you the rest of the film/documentary, but you must see this one with you're own eyes. Because then you can feel the vibe of this movie. This movie got a lot of style for me, so i rewarded it with a 8.

    Greetings from gijs and the rest of Holland. See you.
  • Spoilers herein.

    I usually have a hard time with documentaries. Film for me is a matter of conversations between different parts of myself and various personalities (and virtual personalities as elements) within the project. This requires a certain synthesis of the reality in and of the film. Most documentaries, the journalistic ones, cannot acknowledge the synthetic nature of what they show.

    No so here. The topic is one that interests: kids making up something that has no purpose other than being a vehicle for style - and it carrying that meme of style to millions, perhaps hundreds of millions, of kids. A question of expression completely in line with what happened to our music and dress for a long while before the counterforces of hiphop and country developed.

    Cool. And as with so many such successful, youth-driven revolutions, this one was invented by savvy journalism. These same journalists now do a metajob on reporting both the phenomenon and how they created it. Along the way, they have copious interviews with the players.

    The same style is used in the film as in the skating, which is a practiced but of course not entirely committed ragginess. There is no mention of the sex and little note of drugs except that the star skater (perhaps the only one that was truly committed) is now incarcerated. He is a completely dulled individual now, the walking dead.

    So we have double folding: journalism about journalism about self-journalism. The style of style.

    Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.
  • mweston12 June 2002
    This documentary traces the origins and life of the Zephyr skateboard team, using original film shot in the 1970s (mostly by Craig Stecyk) combined with interviews of the team members and other influential people today.

    The first part of the film documents how the "Dogtown" section of Venice, CA came to be, starting back around the turn of the century when the town was created to be a Venice, Italy-like European city. By the 1970's, the one remaining local attraction, the Pacific Ocean Park, had been abandoned, leaving a beach with lots of exposed piers and other hazards. The poor kids living in the area had nothing better to do than surf, and they excelled despite (or perhaps because of) their surroundings. Because the waves dissipated in the afternoon, they took up skateboarding to fill their time, and the empty swimming pools caused by the drought during those years plus their surfing backgrounds led them to create the vertical skateboarding style that is mainstream today.

    I found that the film covered much more about surfing than I expected, which seemed like a bonus since I really didn't know much about surfing or skateboarding before I watched the film. The soundtrack, not surprisingly, was good as well. I also liked how these kids were just following their passion and generally ended up better off for the experience. The parts that didn't work so well for me were the drama that they tried to create, which seemed somewhat forced, and the team's somewhat overinflated sense of self-importance (although this is probably just left-over street attitude from where they grew up). This is not to say that they didn't have significant influence, but only that it seems extremely likely that there were other factors as well.

    One note: My wife is more affected than most to nausea when films use what we refer to as "SpastiCam" (wiggling camera movements). This film is often guilty, so if you are so afflicted, be warned.

    I would recommend this film to anyone, but especially to anyone with skateboarding and/or surfing in their history.

    Seen on 5/11/2002.
  • First off, I'd like to say I know basically zilch about the origins and the rebirth of skateboarding. I remember ordering and thumbing through "Thrasher" for the magazine rack in my music store 20 years ago, and watching all the skate punks with their Circle Jerks t-shirts snap it up upon arrival. But I just couldn't relate, and still can't.

    Flash forward to today, and it's pretty much still that way. I've heard of one guy (Tony Hawk), and always surf (no pun intended) right on by when the X-games are on ESPN.

    That being said, I enjoyed this documentary. As was stated by several postings earlier, there was a bit of overkill by the makers discussing how great and "groundbreaking" they all were. But hey, it's their movie, and they were there, so why not. So sit back and enjoy this time capsule of the late 70's when you get a chance.

    I guess the thing that totally impressed me the most was the music used in the film. I'm not sure if the record labels who own the rights to all these classic tunes cut the filmmakers any breaks for the licensing and use of all this great period music, but this was probably the most impressive group of songs I've ever heard in a documentary. It surely puts to shame the crap heard in almost every big-budget film coming out these days.
  • paulnewsome10 September 2012
    The first half is very very hard going with all its immature self appraising drivel. You do really feel a little embarrassed to be watching middle aged men who really need to grow up harping on about how cool they were when they were 12. The first 40 minutes really should have ended on the cutting room floor. This film is just too self congratulatory and you gives the viewer the impression that these people have obviously done nothing else of any importance with the rest of their lives.The first and only sign of any depth in this self indulgent mefest is the interview with the tattooed jail bird with the collapsed septum, but the hope of something meaningful quickly disappears when the interviewer asks the guy a question that he'd just answered. The comparables of how they see them self are pure comedy, statements like 'it was like Joe Frazier knocking down Ali" and "we were an extension of society" gimme a break. This could have been a great insight into a very small subculture, in a very small time frame in a very small town. The point of a good documentary is too enlighten the viewer about a subject he knows little about. The problem being is the protagonists involved in this farce are deluded enough to think the world see them in as high regard as they see themselves. The only feat of astonishment is how they have managed to maintain such big egos for over 30 years. I guess there is always another 12 year old ready to impress. Sean Penn does the voice over and by the end he sounded as bored as the audience and judging from the cough halfway through he couldn't be bothered coming back to do any retakes.
  • I live in Santa Monica and found the history lesson and nostolgia

    worth watching, but the self congradulatory nature of this film had

    me rolling my eyeballs about every ten seconds. Okay, you were different and really good at skateboarding. But

    lines like, "we did a thousand things with a structure that the

    architect never dreamed of." (Maybe 20 things...) And "It was like

    Muhammad Ali knocking down Joe Frazier," got a little tough to

    handle after the first half hour. I think that, if about half to three quarters of the interview footage of

    the Zephyr team telling us what bad asses they were and what

    "rock stars," they became could have been taken out, I would have

    appreciated their talents even more. I guess I'm just one of those

    who thinks that it should be the audience member who gets to see

    what the people accomplish and then sit back and make their own

    judgements about whether or not the subjects are worthy of that

    kind of praise. One thing I really liked about "The Last Waltz," was that everyone

    who watches it gets to make up their own mind about what kind of

    musical influences the members were. I think it's kind of ironic that the subjects of this film talk about ego

    getting in the way of the artistic nature of the sport, but they haven't

    seemed to learn anything from it as they sort of ruin this film with

    their grown up ego.
  • Excellent Piece of work!

    I am not a surfer nor a skate board fan, but work this good about sorting sock drawers would have been riveting. A must see!

    There is a lot to enjoy here. Excellent Visuals. Great sound track mix. Huge body of documentary work both pictures and film.

    The life work and love of the subject is captivating.
  • Miles-1020 October 2003
    Take a subject I didn't know much about and make it exciting, why don't you? It so happens that back about 1979, director Robert Altman said that he didn't believe he had ever made a real movie and that he expected that one of these kids riding skateboards--if he doesn't break his neck--will make the first movie. Well, I wouldn't put such an expectation on Stacy Peralta, but he is a skateboarder who has made a good movie. Of course, he was forced by the nature of the film he was making to use existing footage, and it is certainly a good thing that so much archival footage existed. Peralta edited it together well with not-your-usual talking head shots of his erstwhile colleagues as they are today. The whole effect is post-modern in the best sense, but that has been done. Altman's prediction hasn't quite come true. What Peralta has done, however, is capture enough of the energy of those heady days that we can appreciate what it must have been like when modern skateboarding was invented by the Z-Boys. This is all good. I highly recommend "Dogtown."
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