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Bones Brigade: An Autobiography

Quebec Premiere
  • USA
  • 2012
  • 110 mins
  • HD
  • English

"A special night of reminiscing about the glorious 1980s" — Jaime Owen, SKATEBOARDER

"Pure cinematic catharsis" — Bjorn Olson, EXCLAIM!

As a young teenager in the mid-’70s, Stacey Peralta was part of the revolutionary Zephyr skate team in Venice, California. When the team imploded, he left competition to create the Powell Peralta skateboards company and founded the Bones Brigade at the end of the ’70s. He went against trend by building his team with a group of pre-teen boys that showed promise: Tony Hawk, Steve Caballero, Rodney Mullen, Lance Mountain, Mike McGill and Tommy Guerrero — now legends of skateboarding — started there, and it’s together in the brigade that they grew. Through an astounding amount of archival footage, we witness the creation of now-classic moves (the flat-landing Ollie, the McTwist, the Caballerial), at a time where most tricks were still to be invented. The revolution wasn’t only happening in the sport, but also in the marketing of its products, where Powell Peralta was consistently innovating with off-kilter ads. They then went on to create the art of the skateboard videos, some very tricks-oriented, some completely goofy (ANIMAL CHIN!!). With the coaching of Peralta, this combination of different talents filled with determination pushed each other to higher levels and elevated the sport.

Eleven years ago, Stacey Peralta taught us the foundations of skateboarding with the classic DOGTOWN AND Z BOYS. He now comes back to tell us the second chapter with the story of the boys who made what skateboarding is today. While DOGTOWN was a great success at making a thoroughly entertaining documentary, BONES BRIGADE is a much more personal affair. Through a mix of intimate, very candid and sometimes surprisingly emotional interviews, these geniuses of skateboarding tell us their childhood, their creative process, their struggles and successes through the sport. Complemented with testimonies from Christian Hosoi, Duane Peters, Tony Alva and many other old pros, this doc gives us a definitive insight in the story of skateboarding in the 8’0s. As the adorable and inspiring Rodney Mullen says, skateboarding gave them a voice. Little did they know they would in turn be the ones breathing life into it and influencing generations to come.

— Stephanie Trepanier