Zero to a Hundred in Disappointment

I’m still irked. I sat down to watch the crowdfunded “surf documentary” about at-the-time rookie pre-champ Lakey Peterson. It’s not a documentary. It’s a long form piece of PR dreg. And I paid $5 for this nonsense on iTunes.

Now, if I know I’m watching PR and I want to pay for it then cool. But this really irritated me that I got duped. What’s the vetting process for putting up something as a doc and getting hoodwinked. Plus, it wasn’t even a well made piece of PR. Lakey’s people should call up Bieber’s people. He’s got this crap down.

Photo: – A little too Christian Ke$ha

A documentary nowadays, like the “news,” is some form of editorial. I’m wearily used to that. Try finding the facts about four hours after an event has occurred and the what, when, why and how is all but lost.

I tried getting the basic details on the Boston bombing and got nothing but pieces on how neighbors felt about the brothers, how the families cried conspiracy while the uncle condemned them, etc. I just wanted to know the basic aspects of the story that were known. Not conjecture.

Coverage tends to evolve from NEWS (which is an acronym for North, East, West, South) to speculation in about five seconds. What I want from a documentary is a point of view, not a scattergun of do-gooding in between a surfing style that I guess I don’t understand, me being a blobby couch barnacle type.

Between the teenage sulking from getting shut down again and again by Sally Fitzsimmons, Peterson does nice things like clean up the beach, talk to schools and raise awareness for, you know, stuff.

She’s also got a deep faith. I have no qualms with any of that. At all. In fact, mazel tov. But if you want to profess your faith, there’s a verse in that big black book about being humble with your good works, dude. Of course, we know that PR people are birthed into the netherworld as minor minions so… There’s that.

Lakey is not a bad person. She’s a kid. She’s a tall blonde, naturally athletic girl who has advanced in a sport that she took on albeit young but pretty late for a SoCal surfer. And she gradually gets pretty good at that style. However, her story is not very inspiring. At least not for me.

A white, blonde kid from Montecito doesn’t have much of an arc. Surfer Bethany Hamilton, who makes an appearance alongside Peterson, is a real story.

The only arc in this piece is that she got better at surfing and took the US Open. The end. In between, we’re taken on a series of PR ops with Petersen doing nice stuff, usually on camera.

Bethany Hamilton

Bethany Hamilton is featured and a bigger inspiration

She does focus on her pastor’s young granddaughter’s cancer and “surfs for Daisy,” recognizing that people have real problems, bigger issues but with all kids who have never had to suffer, it rings as tinny. Sorry I ruined it for you. Sorry I’m that asshole. But seriously, dreck.

I love surf docs. If you want to check out for a couple of hours and enjoy yourself, watch Riding Giants. There are also many other excellent films about the sport with actual truly inspiring elements.

I just wanted to watch some surfing while I stuffed myself with veggie yellow curry and then smoke a cigarette along with a vodka soda. Instead, I skipped the smoke and drink and got high glaring at iTunes. I realize that I would never have seen this film if it were couched for what it really was.

There is a part that I appreciated the most about the “film.” The filmmaker Aaron Lieber credited everyone who donated to the Kickstarter campaign. Sure, it’s a wall of names but I thought that was at least one selfless thing in this marketing presentation.

And the irony of my giving opinion over giving the facts is not lost on me. So watch Zero to 100 yourself. Maybe you’ll be inspired.