Koch on Film


By Ed Koch

Step into Liquid (+)

There is no improving on what the Brown family, father Bruce and son Dana, did 37 years ago in “Endless Summer.” That movie was unique and took the country by storm. I still remember it as though it were yesterday. This new flick could have been called “Endless Summer II,” but perhaps it was smarter to give it a different name because it doesn’t come close to the first rendition. The baton in creating this sequel was overwhelmingly in the hands of Dana.

The effect of the first movie may have been so great because a movie on surfboarding had never been done before “Endless Summer,” or if done, not widely distributed. Nevertheless, if you are into surfing — certainly as an observer — you will find much of the film fun and interesting. But the excitement of the first film is gone.

The producers were probably aware that the material was thin and made it thinner by going to Vietnam and having some scenes in the current film with Vietnamese children but with very little exciting ocean surfing in Vietnam. There was one new technique exhibited in the film involving surfboards with a special rudder and hydrofoil effect so that the board hovered over the water by what looked like at least a foot.

Surfing is a dangerous sport and there are injuries, sometimes permanent and catastrophic. One surfer, now a paraplegic, went surfing anyway, lying prone on the board. I love to watch skiing, surfing, ice skate dancing (couples and singles) and ballroom dancing. I do a terrific foxtrot — not on ice — in the ballroom. So, this movie, which I saw the week before Labor Day, ending the summer, was reasonably enjoyable. Perfect it wasn’t. There were a couple of interviews with Bruce Brown. He has aged; no longer the California Adonis and surfer of yesteryear. Thirty-seven years went by so quickly.

– Ed Koch