THE OUTSIDE // Props have to be given to the advertising agency on this one, putting together the promotional artwork for the film. They got me, hook, line, and sinker. The artwork for the film makes it look unforgettable. The reality of the film… completely forgotten.
Did you like the animated surfing film Surf’s Up? If so, the beginning of The Outside is a rip off of that; interviews with a dozen people about a specific surfer, except this film does not have the luxury of being animated. The Outside has the feel of Blue Crush, washed out and dramatic, minus the gorgeous women and the sustainable plot of Blue Crush.
The performances in The Outside were dismal. Dialogue is emotionless and monotone, with not one person appearing to be a professional actor minus, perhaps, the mother, played by Nia Peeples. The dialogue was not only dry, but un-individualized. No one has a specific character and everyone speaks the same stylized dialogue, from the professional agent, who you would guess would speak differently from the surfer street rats, but apparently the writers thought everyone should have the same characterization… or none at all.
In no way did I buy this as real life. The plot was lop-sided and only gained its drama by kicking the lead character while he was down time and again. The only actual parts of the film that work are the montage sequences put to music that are glorified music videos.
The Outside is a surfing film without any actual surfing. The one element the film should have going for it would have been epic surfing sequences but, alas, that would mean this film would actually have to get something right. The surf sequences resemble that of stock footage and does not include any actors, save for them sitting on their boards in the water. You would imagine if the producer/director hired people that could not act it would be because they could surf and therefore would have some reason to be in the film. Nope again.
Three words came to mind after The Outside… (1) Awkward, (2) Broadsiding, & (3) Unnatural. Sadly, the film will get watched for the same reason I thought it was a good idea; because the sunset and the ocean on the cover make the film look epic. Instead, The Outside lacks any sort of charisma the cover insinuates and should be left to drown in the Pacific.
[Directed by Ari Davis] [R] [90 min] [20 July 2010]