16 July, 2008

Six of the Best! The Spirit of Skateboarding clips

As I walked to work today, I came across a skateboard on the street. I was tempted to ride it into work, but instead I just popped a little ollie and went on my way.

As a youth, I loved punk music and skateboarding the cobbled streets of Dublin, smashing my face and limbs at every opportunity.
Here are six of the best skateboarding clips I could find:
  1. 'The Bones Brigade Video Show' - Skateboarder and film director Stacy Peralta (who directed the excellent Dogtown and Z Boys), is an ambivalent figure. On the one hand, he promoted skateboarding tirelessly, on the other he merchandised and commericialised it relentlessly.

    Peralta innovated the skate video to promote his company Powell-Peralta and the Bones Brigade, the team of professional skateboarders it sponosored. It captures the blend of goofy and acidic humour, playful and subversive attitudes, relaxed and aggressive poses that characterised skateboarding in the 1980s.

    This is the first of seven parts, the rest of which can be seen here.

  2. Thrashin' - Romeo and Juliet on skateboards. This film distills the fizzy pop character out of skateboarding, but doesn't totally neglect its gritty punk flavour. There is a lot of dayglow in this film, a lot of doods, but Red Hot Chili Peppers make an appearance. It's pretty rad.

  3. The Search for Animal Chin - The first 'film' proper directed by Stacy Peralta, this was one of the few skateboarding videos to feature any kind of narrative (albeit a loose one). The Bones Brigade search for Animal Chin - a kind of skateboarding will'o'the wisp - skate and have adventures.

    Animal Chin captured the spirit of skateboarding, while it was still pretty raw, and some amazing footage of the talented Bones Brigade.

  4. Rodney Mullen - Incredibly talented, graceful and intellectual skateboarder, who epitomises the 'wow!' factor of skateboarding.

  5. Skateboard Kings, 1978 - An interesting British documentary about Tony Alva and the dogtown skate scene. This is the first of seven parts, the rest of which are available here.

  6. Back to the Future - I doubt I was the only kid to fall for skating after the cool intro sequence from back to the future. This chase sequence sealed the deal. After that I was always trying to grab the backs of passing cars and get towed into school.