Warp Wave’s ‘A Place Called Kookabunga’ might just be the kookiest film to drop since the RobotFood trilogy. The recipe is simple: Look at what everyone else is doing, and do the exact opposite. In the same way that the RobotFood movies departed from the banger after banger formula that MackDawg built a legacy on, ‘A Place Called Kookabunga’ puts on a goofy hat, straps into a weird looking directional board and carves its own line into its rightful place as an instant classic piece of snowboard cinema. WarpWave reminds us once again that snowboarding is all about having fun and following your own line.
If you’re looking for the next variation of the quad cork, or some crazy-ass Brisse inspired transfers, this isn’t the video for you. Still, you owe it to yourself to watch, if only to see several of the style masters of today do their thing.
The movie is split up into sections based on location. This allows you to focus more on the overall experience of the film rather than the riders as individuals. And yet, each rider stands out because of their own distinct styles. You’ll know a Grey Thompson turn when you see one. At one point during the ‘Subterranean abunga’ section you see 3-4 different riders each make a heel side turn in front of the camera that is as unique as their own fingerprint. This film oozes style, not just because of how the crew approaches riding, but also because of the way it is put together.
The overall feel of the film is decidedly retro without becoming a novelty. The riding itself is raw, yet smooth and powerful. Watching Kookabunga you get the feeling that you’re watching sessions go down as they happened. The ‘Hot Boyn Abunga’ section has the crew ripping around Squaw Valley mob style: carving around skiers, ollieing skier kids, and tossing clean 3s and grabs over drops the way you and your friends do on a day to day basis. That’s the other rad thing about this kooky-ass film: it’s accessible. It’s the kind of film you’ll watch over and over again, and the kind of film that makes you want to get out with your friends and get a little weird.
The return of the carve and surf/skate inspired freeriding can be largely attributed to all the kooks who take part in this film. Their “Keep it simple, stupid” approach to riding honors the roots of riding and is really enjoyable to watch.
‘A Place Called Kookabunga’ proves that you don’t need the craziest tricks, the biggest budget, shots of helicopters taken from helicopters or superstar riders to make a great snowboard film that will stand the test of time. While other films may get more buzz this year, WarpWave’s offering is definitely worth the $6 they’re asking for it on vimeo. These guys are doing good things for snowboarding, so show them some support so we can enjoy another kooky film next season.