Blue Crush

"OK"

Blue Crush Review


The 40 or so minutes that the newfangled surf-girls movie "Blue Crush" spends in the water is a cinematic blast of pipe-riding pleasure. Post-feminist and almost the antithesis of a "Gidget" flick, it also has a bit more going for it than just bikini babes and bitchin' waves. But its plot is ankle deep at best -- an amalgam of sports and summer love clichés that act as an undertow into the past it's trying to leave behind.

Accessible, freckle-nosed blonde knockout Kate Bosworth (who had small roles in "Remember the Titans" and "The Horse Whisperer") stars as Anne Marie, a gifted, Hawaii-raised board bunny with an ambition toward surfing fame and fortune. But a dysfunctional home life and haunting memories of a near-death wipeout are holding her back.

She lives in a shabby beach shack with her two best friends Eden (Michelle Rodriguez) and Lena (Sanoe Lake), with whom she surfs every morning before they show up late for their low-paying house-cleaning jobs at a ritzy resort hotel. Lip service is paid to the fact that Anne Marie is raising her rebellious 14-year-old sister (Mika Boorem) because mom's off gallivanting with "a meal ticket who doesn't like the kids menu."

But while director John Stockwell -- who turned last year's potentially trite teen romance "crazy/beautiful" into something honest and exceptional -- makes the most of the movie's whitecaps, when it comes to the inevitable, screen-hogging romantic subplot, "Blue Crush" comes close to drowning.

Anne Marie gets romanced by a dime-a-dozen pretty boy Matthew Davis ("Legally Blonde"), badly miscast as an NFL quarterback (he looks like he weighs about 160 lbs.) who is in Hawaii for a game (even though the movie takes place in February). Generic flirtations lead to nights in white satin sheets, and off-the-shelf misunderstandings beget emotional conflicts that distract our girl from her goal of competing in the Pipeline Masters. That would be the annual surfing championship where Anne Marie could 1) conquer her fears, 2) beat out celebrity women surfers making cameo appearances in the film, and 3) impress talent scouts for product-sponsored teams and thus be granted her life-long dream of becoming a professional surfer.

Inspired by a story in Outside magazine entitled "Surf Girls of Maui," whenever "Blue Crush" sticks close to the sea, it's almost spectacular. Stockwell, a surfer himself, sends cameras into the curl to capture his surf girls speeding by as the powerhouse soundtrack pumps these scenes with energy. Underwater shots take the audience literally inside of giant waves as they roll over heroines. Aerial overhead shots establish an amazing sense of place, showing the breaking blue water peppered with surfboards, the gorgeous green land and the luxury of the resort where the girls work.

The surfing -- performed in part by the actresses themselves and in part by pro-surfer stunt doubles whose faces have been digitally replaced by the stars' pretty kissers -- is plenty exciting. Audible "whoas" and "wows" were emanating from the audience at a sneak preview this week. But they also laughed their butts off at how easily Anne Marie falls in bed with the QB when she goes to him for a shoulder to cry on after a fight with a girlfriend.

The actresses all give likable -- if lightweight -- free-spirit performances that buoy the film a little when it can't find its land legs. But it's a pity that first-time screenwriter Lizzy Weiss couldn't be bothered to find some fresh material for them to play when they're not in the water.

In terms of girl power, "Blue Crush" may have 21st Century sensibilities. But its plot is as hackneyed as anything Annette and Frankie had to deal with in the 1960s.



Blue Crush

Facts and Figures

Run time: 104 mins

In Theaters: Friday 16th August 2002

Box Office USA: $1.0M

Box Office Worldwide: $51.8M

Budget: $25M

Distributed by: Sony Pictures Classics

Production compaines: Universal Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 36%
Fresh: 29 Rotten: 52

IMDB: 5.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Anne Marie Chadwick, as Matt Tollman, as Eden, as Lena, as Penny Chadwick, Chris Taloa as Drew

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Jackie Movie Review

Jackie Movie Review

Rather than make a standard biopic about the most famous First Lady in American history,...

Split Movie Review

Split Movie Review

After a few badly received sci-fi blockbusters, M. Night Shyamalan returned to his earthier style...

xXx: Return of Xander Cage Movie Review

xXx: Return of Xander Cage Movie Review

It's been 15 years since Vin Diesel walked away from his XXX role, killing off...

Manchester by the Sea Movie Review

Manchester by the Sea Movie Review

This may not be the cheeriest movie of the season, but it's so skilfully written,...

Live By Night Movie Review

Live By Night Movie Review

Ben Affleck launched his directing career 10 years ago with his film of Dennis Lehane's...

La La Land Movie Review

La La Land Movie Review

After storming awards season with Whiplash two years ago, writer-director Damien Chazelle returns with something...

Assassin's Creed Movie Review

Assassin's Creed Movie Review

Hopes were high that this film might finally crack the curse of movies based on...

Advertisement
Silence Movie Review

Silence Movie Review

Faith is a topic Martin Scorsese can't quite shake, courting controversy with complex films like...

A Monster Calls Movie Review

A Monster Calls Movie Review

A difficult movie to market, this isn't actually the BFG-style fantasy adventure it looks like....

Monster Trucks Movie Review

Monster Trucks Movie Review

Word has it that a 4-year-old came up with the idea for this unapologetically silly...

Collateral Beauty Movie Review

Collateral Beauty Movie Review

Dramas exploring the nature of death and the true meaning of life are always in...

Paterson Movie Review

Paterson Movie Review

Unpredictable filmmaker Jim Jarmusch ricochets from his artful vampire movie Only Lovers Left Alive into...

I, Daniel Blake Movie Review

I, Daniel Blake Movie Review

At 80 years old, British filmmaker Ken Loach won his second Cannes Film Festival with...

Why Him? Movie Review

Why Him? Movie Review

Writer-director John Hamburg continues to recycle the formula that made his first hit Meet the...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.