Owen Gleiberman
May 10, 2002 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Dogtown and Z-Boys

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
PG-13
runtime
89 minutes
Limited Release Date
04/26/02
performer
Sean Penn
director
Stacy Peralta
distributor
Sony Pictures Classics
author
Stacy Peralta, Craig Stecyk
genre
Documentary

We gave it an A-

A dazzlingly crafted documentary about the ’70s surf punks of lower Los Angeles who singlehandedly turned skateboarding into an extreme sport. We see endless Super-8 footage of long-blond-haired kids — think Hanson in the urban wasteland — as they ride low on their boards and then advance to empty swimming pools, zipping along the surfaces of the concrete basins and right up into the air. Sure, it’s only skateboarding. But the thrill of Dogtown is that the kids who had the audacity to kick a concrete sport into the third dimension, carving up space with their boards, were as obsessive as the creators of punk rock or Cubism. The movie invites you to share their free ride. A-

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