Posts Tagged ‘better than baseball’
Inline skates + Miszous + 540s + steez gaps + unbelievably good comedic timing + twisted mind + Gravediggaz = you can’t go wrong.
If you really think about it, rollerblades are silly. But thankfully there are people who discover a piece of their spirit in these wheeled boots… and they get hooked.
Rollerblading is lucky that Todd McInerney got hooked (and so am I). Although it’s difficult to pinpoint what sparked Todd’s lifelong interest in skating, I’ve often had a theory that rollerblading gave Todd something that he couldn’t find anywhere else.
There’s nothing silly about that… – Joey McGarry.
At the start of filming for this video I was the fattest I’d ever been (Timbits, Tim Hortons coffee, beer and late night editing sessions) and by the end of filming for this video I was in the best shape of my life (speed skates 3-5 times a week, healthy eating and very little alcohol).
Some of the best skating I’ve ever done is in this video because I wasn’t FAT and because I was using different kinds of skates to open up my mind. Moral of the story: don’t get FAT and spin on the ground a lot then people will call you creative. – Joey McGarry.
There was a girl that once typed that ‘Manson’ was her favorite skater and it kind of stuck (but not really because I think Mason didn’t like the name Manson).
I could definitely see how Mason (or Manson?) was this girls favorite skater… He’s one of my favorite skaters too. Todd once wrote in an old SOL notebook: “When people ask me who my favorite skater is… I say Mason”.
From the makers of “Cirque Duh SOL eh?” comes “Better than Baseball” which is a celebration of life, of youth, the human spirit and … all» rollerblading.
Filmed over a span of 10 years, Better Than Baseball is a window into the lives of a crew who treat rollerblading as a necessity of life.
“The movie had more character, personality, energy and creativity than any movie released since Cirque Duh SOL eh?”- Collin Martin. This dual-disc DVD has over 3 hours of footage from Canada to Europe and includes a bonus video “Park Killaz”. Watch this collection of memories and take yourself back to the feeling you had when you first experienced wheels beneath your feet, remind yourself why you still rollerblade, and be inspired to rewrite the history of rollerblading. The past is dead; the future has infinite possibilities.
Having witnessed part of the creation of the “Better Than Baseball”, one could say I would be partial to praising and promoting this film. This is true to a point. Joey is my brother. Most of these people are my friends. Some of those memories are just as much mine as Joey’s or Todd’s. However, the effort and thought which went into this piece of art must be recognized….regardless of who I am. It is art. It is beautiful. It is a celebration of youth, life, and the human spirit.
There are certain themes that are constant throughout “Better Than Baseball”. As “new agey” as it sounds, one of the main aspects of this film is the inner child. So often as we leave our teens, we try to
fight our child-like behaviors. There is a right and a wrong way to embrace our youthful personality traits. “Better than Baseball” perfectly encompasses the maturity of a group who is dedicated and
passionate about rollerblading, with the playfulness we so often abandon as adults. I would use “Monty Python” as a perfect example, and most definitely say is an influence amongst the creators.
Another major theme in this film (which ties in with childhood) is the comparison of past to present. It is a wonder to see how far these people have come. They never gave up. Even when rollerblading railed off to be filed in the “uncool” folder by all the “I skateboard to be cool….and if it were a fad to eat your own feces, I’d do that to-hipsters”. They do this for the love of the sport. They have skated for ten years. It is evident in the old home movies. Home made rails in driveways, big clunky rollerblades, and a passion in their eyes.
I can honestly say that this film is so meticulously edited, one could enjoy it without music. Although the tunes are so fucking fabulous and well chosen. “Better than Baseball” is a film which celebrates the
human body. The obvious example is of course rollerblading. I can’t even jump two inches off the ground on rollerblades. Actually, I can’t even stop properly. So to me, I am astounded by what the body
is able to achieve. Especially the slow motion shots. It’s like bloody ballet. In contrast with the feats of these rollerbladers, they also show extremely normal, everyday actions (such as eating, drinking,
sleeping, driving etc). These are necessities to us all, and the way they are placed in the film is priceless. Life’s basic needs are shown here….because to these young men, rollerblading is a necessity of life….just like eating or sleeping.
I also enjoy the dozens of odd and hilarious facial expressions throughout the movie. This goes along with the intentional inclusion of editing glitches to demonstrate that we are in fact only human. However, it balances nicely with the grandiose of the rest of the film.
**I absolutey love Todd’s little comment to the waitress about “finishing him off” (regarding the individual who couldn’t finish their breakfast). It is a very Todd moment.**
The intro leading up to the main title is utterly comical and innovative. With all the tiny pauses throughout, it goes to show just how offbeat and adventurous each individual is. And what the fuck is with that chainsaw shot? I don’t even want to know where that came from.
**Joey, your “deep voice” is the scariest thing I have ever heard. You sound like a bouncer from the Max.**
Also, I realized there is a reason that Joey has stayed “Joey”…and not become Joseph. He has always kept his childhood with him. He holds a wonder about the world that not many people have. It shows in his sections. I especially enjoyed the shot of him skating backwards across the top of the staircase….which proceeds into fantastic shot of Joey’s excitement towards the canals of Amsterdam.
The section with Joel has a certain slacker feel to it (not necessarily that Joel is a slacker). That wheelchair shot is GOLD! His skating is amazing….but something about this section didn’t grab me as much. Don’t know what it is.
The intro with Todd etc entering the front door, paints a wonderful portrait of excitement/anticipation o’ the Canadian House Party. The crew has knighted themselves “SOL”, and I can most certainly say that there is no shortage of solidarity within this group.
Todd’s section shows a very masculine but playful side of his personality. The song contributes to this. It also shows the more gentle side of Todd (sleeping etc). I could go on forever about the hilarity of
this section. Everyone will love it I’m sure. Todd is just a likeable guy. And as Todd so deeply said once to me “you gotta live before you die”. That’s right Todd. Oh how right you are.
The Ulrich Schnauss section creates two very different feelings. Just like the song, the visuals are partly organic, and partly industrial. It makes me love the city, the lights, the people. That shot of the blonde woman looking up, with the television screen in the background is phenomenal.
What can I say about all the sunsets/sunrises in “Better than Baseball”? They are some of the most spectacular visions in nature, and they also serve to show how the filmmakers appreciate nature. Every shot of wildlife/landscape in this movie can without a doubt be called “cinematography”. These are not just home videos. Of course they are in some respects, but it takes a special eye to see our world the way this group has.
Mason’s section made me feel uneasy, which I’m sure was the point. It is dark, and just makes me feel strange. It shows a disturbed side of Mason in parts….but that “hanging” shot at the end (and when
Todd accidentally knocks him off the stool) is what balances it perfectly. So so so funny. Also, it’s great that his girlfriend was shown “fuckin givin’er” on the blades…..especially in the pink pants.
The Black Mountain Section is dear to my heart. I can’t say anymore than that. I almost pissed myself while watching this one get pieced together. It really is a non-homosexual love story of sorts.
And the last two sections. If there is anything on the face of the earth that perfectly demostrates what is like to know these people…. it would be these few minutes. I won’t talk about how I cried because of course you know I did). However, I will say that these sections of the film should be seen by every person who loves to live and breathe and move and exist in a world full of madness….where we can create our own happiness and peace of mind. They have done that. And I thank them all for sharing it with me.
Much less important side note **And I would also like to thank you all for including me in the process of making this film, as well as showing me (twice) putting a flower in someone’s hair and (twice) handing
a beer to someone. That is how I would like to be immortalized
Extra edit from Better than baseball.
Western Canadas Allstar team for blading. Josh Silver, Brian baxter, Corey muthafuckin lowe, Keith Mew, Unwin, Adair, Roux, Stevie E.
Thanks to Joeymc for the mail.