A Movie A Day #256: Thrashin’ (1986, directed by David Winters)

Cory Webster (a young Josh Brolin, who looks identical to older Josh Brolin) is an amateur skateboarder from the Valley who hopes to win a downhill competition and score some sweet corporate sponsorship.  Chrissy (Pamela Gidley) is an innocent blonde from Indiana who is staying with her brother in Venice Beach.  Cory and Chrissy are in love but there is only one problem.  Chrissy’s brother is Tommy Hook (Robert Rusler), leader of The Daggers, a punk skateboard gang.  There’s no way Hook is going to let his sister go out with someone from the Valley.

Thrashin’ has a plot but it’s just an excuse for almost nonstop, kinetic skateboarding action.  The film is justly famous for the jousting scene, where Cory and Hook battle in Bronson Canyon, seeing who can knock who off his board.  Attentive viewers will be able to spot skateboard greats Tony Alva, Tony Hawk, Christian Hosoi, and Steve Caballero in the cast.  Fortunately, Gator Rogowski is nowhere to be found.

Best of all, Thrashin‘ features an early performance from Sherilyn Fenn!  She plays Hook’s girlfriend and, though her role may be small, it is easy to see the spark that would make her the breakout star of Twin Peaks.  At the time that she made Thrashin’, Fenn was dating a young actor named Johnny Depp.  The film’s director, David Winters, hoped to cast Depp in the lead role but the producers insisted on Brolin, who does a good job even if he never looks completely comfortable on a board.

With its minimal plot and threadbare character development, Thrashin‘ is dumb but legendary, a film that embodies an era.  It also has a killer soundtrack.  Keep an eye out for an early version of Red Hot Chili Peppers, performing Black-Eyed Blonde in a club scene.

Music Video of the Day: Imagine by John Lennon (1971, dir. John Lennon & Yoko Ono)

Seeing as it is the International Day Of Peace, I thought it was appropriate to finally spotlight the music video for Imagine by John Lennon.

While this video received a release on its own, it was also edited into a film called Imagine, which was released a year later in 1972.

It’s not the only music video that was made for this song. In 1986/1988 Zbigniew Rybczyński made a new music video for it. Maybe I’ll spotlight that one at a later date if it is still available.

The “This Is Not Here” sign comes from the title of Ono’s art show that was being displayed in New York.

They arrive at the door with the sign on it after walking down the title of a Beatles song (The Long And Winding Road) and proceed to teleport inside the house. Maybe they did that because if that sign isn’t there, then neither are they. Perhaps it’s because the song is about an imagined reality. I’m not sure what they were going for with that.

After that, the video alternates between a closeup shot of Lennon playing the famous white piano…

and a long shot showing Ono opening the metaphorical blinds to let the light into the largely empty white room.

Once she’s done, she sits next to John and proceeds to stare off into space. Honestly, it’s kind of weird.

But then Lennon finishes the song, turns to her, gets a little goofy, and they kiss.

The song has been heard and covered so many times that even the Wikipedia article has a section called “Notable performances and cover versions.” They will often have a full list if they bother to include covers.

The video has had many unofficial postings on YouTube for years, but it took until December of last year for it to get up there officially. I wonder how many people have seen the video in addition to having heard the song.

Today, a video is supposed to go up for a song called One World One Love for the International Day Of Peace. I’ll have to look at that some time.