Blue Crush [DVD] 
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Teen surfing drama. Three friends - Anne Marie (Kate Bosworth), Eden (Michelle Rodriguez), and Lena (Sanoe Lake) and Anne Marie's rebellious sister Penny (Mika Boorem) - live together in a beach hut in Hawaii and live for surfing. An important competition is coming up and Anne Marie has a shot at moving into the professional circuit. However, she has to overcome doubts about her talent - and when she strikes up a tentative relationship with pro footballer Matt Tolman (Matthew Davis) who is visting Hawaii, will it prove too much of a distraction in preparation the big day?
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The best part of Blue Crush, while giving an interesting view into the surfer culture, is the surfing scenes. Much like Top Gun with its jet scenes, the actual surfing overwhelms anything the story has to offer. They're wonderful and exhilating, and as you watch you suddenly realise why, as dangerous as surfing is, why people fall in love with it. The surfing shots at the film's climax are absolutely stunning, and you suddenly realise how much force the ocean has to offer.
The story of Blue Crush is Ann Maria is preparing for the Pipe Competition, which is the one competition that if you do well you can pretty much surf for a living. Her two friends, Eden and Lena (a real surfer), support her and makes sure she stays focused on the competition. The one struggle Ann Marie must overcome is she nearly drowned threes years before the movie starts out. Her mother, who we never see, has left her to raise her sister because life got to intense, and Ann Maria struggles with this same flaw. The Pipe Competition features some of the most intense waves surfers can tackle, and people die out there. The three girls work in a hotel to make ends meet and struggle with getting Ann Maria's sister to school..
That is the movie in a nutshell. Blue Crush's driving force is whether or not Ann Maria will give up her dreams. The biggest stumbling block in the way is an NFL football quarterback who, with some of his buddies, are vacationing. They begin a romance which makes Ann Marie lose focus on the competition. It turns out the quarterback a player and has done this before on several vacations. He then has a change of heart and supports her in the competition. This is the weakest part of the movie.
Why he has a change of heart is never really explained and to this viewer the romance seemed little more than a tool instead of an actual love story between the two characters. You never really connect with him as a person. Instead, he feels like just the mandatory love interest instead of an actual character.
However, give credit where credit is do. Blue Crush gets kudos for actually showing the surfing culture as having to struggle to continue surfing instead of the beach movies of the 1960s where no one knew what work was.
And the surfing shots. Don't forget those.
September 4, 2002
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