After watching four different snowboard video premieres in three days, it was hard to imagine that another snowboard flick wouldn’t just fade into a distant memory of 720 kicker spin. However, the new film “Afterbang,” from the Robot Food crew, took a refreshingly new perspective on the riding attitude and brought the fun back into the sport.
Premiering in San Diego late Thursday night, “Afterbang” had a tough situation on its hands: it was the third video of the night for the hungry crew of industry veterans, pro riders, and snowboard fans in town to see all the new action. And despite very strong reviews from the Wildcat’s new film “Nine Lives” and Kingpin’s “Happy Hour,” “Afterbang” actually stood out.
From the music (The Cars, Talking Heads, and the Buggle’s “Video Killed The Radio Star”) to the riding itself (huge spins off kickers, spins on rails, deep powder, and a ridiculous amount of backflips), it was obvious that the film crew and riders were in synch about their purpose on the mountain: to ride hard, but still have a good time. And that’s really what snowboarding is about: hanging with friends and goofing off.
Opening credits featured a metallic robot hanging out in different areas, holding up sponsors’ names. It was pure comedy from the start. Standout parts included those from Louie Fountain, JP Solberg, Jussi Oksanen, Travis Parker, Chris Engelsman, Joni Malmi, Wille Yli-Luoma, and David Benedek. Some of the goofball scenes included Jaacko Seppala riding down the hill in his boxers, and eight riders all doing backflips off a kicker at the same time.
Overall, the crowd emerged from the premiere super pumped on snowboarding. Unlike many snowboard films which feature the most cutting edge riding and heavy statements from the pros about the consequences associated with the level of riding today, “Afterbang” showed that top-notch riding but also showed why we all snowboard: to have fun with friends on the hill. And winter can’t get here soon enough at this point.