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Just A Little Crush
Blue Crush (DVD)
Member Name: wampyrii
Blue Crush (DVD)
Date: 23/01/03, updated on 23/01/03 (165 review reads)
Advantages: see review
Disadvantages: see review (still think these boxes suck)
To say I?m not really sold on the whole surfing thing would be something of an understatement. I have little interest in standing on an ironing board, negotiating shark infested waters and being crushed by 80ft waves in the pursuit of thrills and the Hollywood portrayal of the sunkissed testosterone infused surfer bum has never resulted in pallatable viewing in the past so I didn?t hold out too much hope for Blue Crush either...despite the claims of those involved in the filming that it attempted to do something new.
Inspired by a magazine article on female surfers, co-writer Lizzy Weiss apparently intended to make a surfing movie about the sport as it really is rather than following the usual Hollywood route and churing out another Point Break(which was great when it had bugger all to do with surfing too) so teaming up with director John Stockwell, that?s what she did...arguably. Whether it was worth the effort or not is a matter of opinion, for the most part, I?d say not, which is a little bit of an unfair assessment because I did enjoy the movie a lot more than I expected to. I didn't learn a damn thing about surfing though which leaves me scratching my head about Weiss was trying to acheive but ahh well...
Blue Crush probably isn?t aimed at me anyway, think of it as one of those movies which appeals to a teenage audience, probably girls more than boys in terms of the storyline, probably boys more than girls in terms of the bikini clad T&A although this is a PG so they?ll be a little disappointed aside from a few flashes of butt and cleavage and will have to settle for the surfing. When it actually gets on with the business of surfing then it comes alive but sadly this amounts to as little as perhaps just a third of the movie, the rest bogs down in a sodden onshore drama which obviously neither writer was particularly interested in but felt they should include because 90 mins of surfing isn?t something you can throw onto a cinema screen an
d start raking in the cash from...boy meets girl fluff with a surfing backdrop however, is, and that?s where this movie goes after an initial promise to be something more interesting.
The movie focuses upon three surfer girls, Anna Marie, Eden, Lena and Anna Marie?s college age sister Penny. The three older girls work as chambermaids at a local hotel but at least one, Anna Marie, could have a career outside of there as a championship surfer, she is certainly good enough and there are few pro-female surfers on the circuit (we are told...don?t ask me, I have no clue). Unfortunately, she almost drowned a few years back and her confidence is somewhat shot to pieces, but urged on by her friends she enters the Pipemasters tournament in Hawaii, dreaming of finding a sponsor and the fame and fortune which goes along with it. The waves are huge though and her training for the competition is interupted by new love interest Matt, a pro-footballer who is also there to take part in some football tournament and wants to learn surfing along with his football buddies. Will Anna Marie win the tournament, the boy and realise her dreams? If you care then you can watch it on R1 DVD right now or you can wait until umm, sometime around March I think when it is scheduled to appear in our cinemas...an absolutely fantastic release date for a summer movie...lol!
Blue Crush is, I suppose, a little like Rocky, but wetter and with a far more attractive lead star who doesn?t require the addition of subtitles for you to pick up every word she says. Anna Marie is the underdog, she trains, she has problems, she comes good...maybe? It?s a movie which is also as much, if not mostly, about female empowerment as anything else. Surfing is a traditionally pretty masoginist sport and we?re frequently treated to scenes of guys putting down girls as being ?unable to surf pipe?, ?just a girl? etc. shortly before being made to look ?stoopid?. Guys come out of Blue Crush quite badly actually
, most are portrayed as dense and looking for a fight, all get something of a hammering at some stage or other. Not to worry though gents, because it?s a little tough to take much of the dramatised portions of Blue Crush too seriously anyway because the characters are so shallow and the external(to the surfing) plot is virtually non-existent. Kate Bosworth?s character, as the one central to the surfing plot, is the only one which gets any kind of development throughout the movie. We learn a little of her past, a few plot-aiding explanations for her fear of the big waves, but that?s about it. She looks gorgeous in a bikini though. I love these ?female empowerment? movies when Hollywood gets their claws into them...girls are best...as long as they are gorgeous and scantily clad lol!
Michelle Rodriguez, who obviously has talent from her showing in Girlfight, has been cast ever since as the tough latina chick and here she is again in the same role once more. ?Tough Latina chick?, that is her entire character nicely packaged and with no additional edges and Matthew Davis as the love interest football pro is expected to look hunky and erm...that?s his entire character in a nutshell, nothing more! The others are as weak and one dimensional as these and for all intents and purposes if they?d been airbrushed out of the scenes they appear in you wouldn?t have noticed anything was missing. Penny is sassy, Lena is cheery and a couple of Matt?s linebacker friends offer a few laughs in a 30-stone-guy-on-a-surf-board-wearing-nut-huggers kind of way, but that?s it in terms of characters or characterisation.
It is the surfing which sells this movie though and the great soundtrack which accompanies it. The scenery is beautiful, Hawaii mid-summer with the beautiful blue waters and huge waves offers up a visual treat. Forget the dull, boring head on surfing shots other movies have offered up as well because this offers up much more than that, either through superb w
ork or digitised trickery, whichever it is, it?s seemless. We get thrown inside the pipe, plunged under the water, get to see the action from above, behind and through the eyes of the surfer - it?s great stuff and really gives you a feel for the adrenaline rush achieved by surfing. If you get the feeling that some of the shots are a little TOO perfect then you wouldn?t be alone, but if there is any trickery used here then it?s not noticable at all and neither are the times when the actors are replaced by their stunt doubles which makes a change. The soundtrack accompanying all this is excellent as well, packed with top tracks and not something I usually notice unless it?s a real stand-out feature.
If more time had been spent in the water, on the training and surfing and away from the weak onshore drama then Blue Crush would have been a far better, more universally appealing movie, it?s that simple. As it stands, it?ll appeal to the teenage audience who will appreciate the clumsily handled soppy romance angle more than most but the rest of us will see it as rather lightweight and perhaps even a little dull.