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The End | review | dvd | Lollipop

The End

(Red Distribution)
by Eric Johnson

Overproduced and under-inspired, The End is a big budget skate film with a whole lot of cash and a serious deficiency of imagination and respect for the viewer and public property. This piece of crap is little more than an overblown skate punk home movie with all the spills edited out and some aimless expensive sequences edited in. Back in the '80s, skate videos were important for little thrashers because the sport was almost never on television, and videos like The Search for Animal Chin were a great way for kids to think of new ways to hurt themselves and piss off their parents. Fast-forward 15 years to the mainstream media's obsession with post-modern ultra-hip countercultures which has turned skateboarding into a fairly mainstream pastime. The skate punk attitude remains, but affluence has rendered it completely disingenuous. In The End, this mixture proves toxic as the big-budget elements, including a drunken orangutan sippin j&b in front of a double-wide trailer, a fatal encounter with some men in black, a bullfight, and a G-rated rub-down by some Vivid Video porn girls are intercut with pretentious slow-motion trick sequences, and the wanton destruction of public property. As for the stunts, yeah, the stairways are a little longer, the jumps a little higher, and Tony Hawk is always impressive, but there's little in this film that dramatically eclipses the antics of any gaggle of neighborhood punks. If anything, it's less interesting than home videos because all the spills and accidents have been conspicuously edited out. The film atrophies until some point midway through when they just show an unmarked van running over trees, shrubs, mail boxes, and real estate signs, then they blow the van up. Really fuckin' deep, guys… Maybe you should've finished eighth grade!

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