Quick Movie Reviews: Thrashin’ (1986)

By the time I started my freshman year of high school in 1986, I was a skater. I liked lots of other stuff too, and I’m not sure I fit the part all that well, but being a skater is what defined me in the territorial adolescent hierarchy. Thrashin’ was released the summer before school started. I must have seen it. It was the first feature film about skateboarding, many of the best skaters of the day made an appearance, and it starred Josh Brolin (Brand) from The Goonies. So why don’t I remember it?

Probably because it was a great big pile of shit. And as rotten as I thought it was this time around, I would have found it much more offensive in ’86. The movie is a Karate Kid clone in terms of plot, but lacks completely the heart and competent performances of the earlier film. Brolin’s character, Cory, moves to Dogtown to stay with his (white) skater friends and train for the big downhill event. He falls for the pretty blonde girl, whose brother, Tommy, is the leader of The Daggers, a nasty skate gang (made up mostly of minorities). Cory gets it on with the slutty blonde and incurs the wrath of Tommy. A skateboarding “joust” is arranged in which Cory and Tommy swing fluffy balls at each other while moving at speeds approaching 5 mph. Eventually the two face off in the big downhill race, etc., etc.

I concede the importance of Thrashin’ historically, and it’s fun to see the skaters of the day pulling off the tricks of the day, but the movie is clearly a cynical Hollywood exploitation of what it saw as a passing fad. We had a word for the kind of people who pulled shit like this: posers.

The scene below marks the first appearance of The Daggers. It’s all you need to see.

1 Response to “Quick Movie Reviews: <em>Thrashin’</em> (1986)”

  1. 1 PIG CITY March 15, 2016 at 7:31 pm

    The first skateboard feature film was actually 1977’s ‘Skateboard’ starring Leif Garrat and Tony Alva. However this too was shite.

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