I have been very fortunate (except perhaps in the case of Thirteen) to have so many free movie opportunities lately. Yesterday’s was Step Into Liquid, the new surfing documentary from Dana Brown (son of Bruce Brown, director of the legendary The Endless Summer). Step Into Liquid doesn’t shatter any documentary filmmaking molds, nor should it be expected to. Its strength is in its dazzling surf cinematography, thanks largely to the skills of the world-class athletes on the screen, such as Taj Burrow and Laird Hamilton (oddly, six-time world champ Kelly Slater gets barely any screen time). There are plenty of insane stunts in the usual hotbed locations like Australia and Hawaii, but there are some surprises as well, with scenes showcasing Wisconsin vets surfing the muddy waters of Lake Michigan, locals riding for miles in waves created by Texas oil tankers, and the Malloy brothers teaching youngsters to surf in northern Ireland.
Undoubtedly, the best was saved for last, but I had to leave just as the requisite “biggest wave ever” scene was beginning, in order to fly across town to meet some friends for Freddy Vs. Jason at The Bridge.
I usually try to avoid the mainstream theaters in the city, as their patrons scarcely acknowledge any of the unwritten (and sometimes written) rules of movie theater etiquette. However, for the same reasons I usually shun these theaters, The Bridge was perfect for Freddy Vs. Jason. No one in the audience had any reservations about this movie being a community dialogue, and startled shrieks and abundant vocal overstatements of the obvious are a welcome component to any such experience in mass market shlock horror. “Damn, that Jason a bad muhfucka!”