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BLUE CRUSH + 100 FT Wednesday

From the Withitgirl Archive: Reviews by Christina Scannipiego 2002



BLUE CRUSH Directed by John Stockwell Reviewed by Christina Scannipiego Well, I saw it. And I'm glad that I did, but I brought a guy along, and he was embarrassed to tell his friends afterwards. I also brought my fourteen-year-old cousin, who doesn't surf, and she seemed psyched about the new "cool" girl flick. From a surfer's standpoint, Blue Crush is somewhat cheesy and unrealistic, but the actual surfing footage is great and energetic, the cinematography beautiful. From the standpoint of a girl who enjoys light dramas, love stories, and cute wardrobes, it's quite entertaining. Blue Crush opens with a brutal flashback: caught under a wave, Anne Marie slams her head against a rock and nearly drowns. The scene is enough to make me cringe, while it creates a great set-up for her conflicts throughout the movie. She goes on to struggle with love, loss, and surfing, in a way that only a teen in a good teen drama can. Aspects of surf culture are well represented, like the crowds, the attitude, the stoke and the corporate game of who is sponsoring who, and whose company logo is spotted the most throughout the movie. Blue Crush does present yet another way that girls can escape the underdog image and emerge victoriously, but on the flip side, her only options seem to lie in outside sources- can she meet a wealthy athlete who will take her away? Or will she land the role as a pawn on the corporate sponsorship chessboard? Ultimately Anne Marie is the heroine, and she wins at what she loves- surfing. To a surfer, the insecurities that Anne Marie unleashes on her psyche are authentic and compelling. The great stunt double work and the beautiful wave shots make up for the fact that I paid for both of my guests. Yet completely unrealistic events had me sinking in my seat, especially some of the final contest scenarios and final shots. The love story is a little over the top, at times, but the humor provoked some definite guffaws. Rent it if you are curious, but better to wait until it's on cable. And you should definitely purchase the soundtrack.



100 FT WEDNESDAY

Directed by Curt Meyers and Eric W. Nelson

Reviewed by Christina Scannipiego


Curt Meyers and Eric W. Nelson, the producers of two former Mavericks 1999-2000 movies Year of the Drag-In and Whipped, brings us 100 Ft Wednesday, after the circa Thanksgiving 2001 monster swell hit Northern California. The entire coast from San Francisco to Half Moon Bay became unsurfably huge at about 2:00 pm on Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving. I was lucky enough to actually watch the arguable "100 ft" set storm through the harbor, and it was one of the most awesome forces of nature I have seen.


Beyond those few minutes, 100 Ft Wednesday highlights awe-inspiring tow-in and paddle-in footage from Todos Santos, Jaws, Waimea Bay, and of course, Mavericks. The energy buzzing throughout the crowd during the entire movie was enough to light a small town. Maybe it was because I watched the movie from a theater in San Francisco, in Maverick's backyard, and maybe because the entire Santa Cruz crew was the starring cast. But when it comes down to it, the sight of featured surfers like Peter Mel, Flea, Barney, Ken "Skindog" Collins, among others, charging down these waves is unreal. Suprahuman, actually.


What is more unbelievable is to hear the crew discuss their feats and realize that they have the same fears and thoughts that all surfers have - they're not robots! - and then escalate that by about 30 feet. For the first time in the Mavericks movies, we watch Layne Beachley tow-in at Todos Santos and at Jaws. First, she modestly tells us that it isn't really that big. Then we see her riding down a monster, looking like a tiny, graceful bird escaping a giant avalanche.


100 Ft Wednesday is more than action-packed; it's awe-inspiring and thought-provoking. The movie rightfully highlights the controversy between The Surfrider Foundation and tow-in surfers. Surfrider wants to ban PWCs (Personal Water Crafts; ie: wave runners and jet-skis, used to tow surfers into waves that are too big for paddling) and tow-in surfers, who want to push their limits, from all of Monterey Bay. See it in the theater, if you can, and don't rent it - buy it.


Christina Scannipiego was interviewed by Fox News representing the withitgirl perspective. The showed aired on August 30, 2002, at 7 pm.


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