FREAKSIDE - A Jamie O’Brien Film
The freak in question is prodigious air and barrel specialist and certified mutant Jamie O’Brien, the North Shore native and 2004 Pipeline Masters champion, whose sessions are workshops in the attitude and architecture of early 21st century surfing. O’Brien’s surfing is not so much about having a routine as it is about having the wide-open attitude to try anything at any time. This opportunism is reflected in this follow-up to Freak Show, an equally self-promoting but highly entertaining DVD. Redundant as you might think this fi lm should be, 23-year-old O’Brien (this issue’s cover star) pulls off so many hairball escapes and impossible segues (at Pipe, Teahupoo, etc.), pegging it to a strong soundtrack (Sizzle Tree, Flip Syde, Jack Johnson, Over It, etc.), that all is forgiven.
To be fair, he does throw in a rather gratuitous segment on other contemporaneous surfers, like Makua Rothman, John Philbin, Kawika Stillwell, Kalani Chapman, Josh Kerr, and John John. O’Brien edited, mixed, and mastered Freakside himself, working with principle cinematography from Tommy Reardon. Very entertaining. - DK