Bigger waves, bigger stunts, bigger action, bigger budget. Everything about the Point Break re-imagining is bigger. Which is probably why I’m so turned off already.
“You ever surfed anyfing like this?” asks Ray Winstone. No Ray, because waves that f*cking big are usually found in movies like San Andreas where Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson can be found merrily driving his speed boat up its vertical face. This bigger thinking seems to exemplify everything about the Point Break reimagining.
The 1991 Kathrine Bigelo directed original was far from being a perfect movie. All of the characters were cartoonish in their actions. Keanu was the least convincing FBI agent ever, Swayze exuded charisma and Gary Busey was… Gary Busey. But the appeal of the film came from Reeve’s character getting sucked into this alternative lifestyle funded by criminal activity. Bold bank heists funded a modest desire to be at one with nature and the sea. Johnny Utah (Reeves) fell for Bodhi’s (Swayze) girl played by the kick-ass Lori Petty. As amateur and basic as the movie was in many respects, it was the down to Earth core emboldened with the odd, terrifying moment of extreme skydiving and the moral dilemma the protagonist found himself in that made it a success.
A decade later we saw an unofficial remake in The Fast and the Furious. The plot is essentially the same, replace surfing with cars and you’ve got it. Even that managed to tap into the same appeal of the original Point Break. But as the franchise rolled on and got more popular, so did the action and spectacle. Fast forward a few years and some studio exec somewhere has had a moment of genius. You need an action packed story with crime, passion and lots of excitement? Make something original? Hell no, let’s remake Point Break, except the bar has been raised by franchises like the Fast and/or Furious types, so this re-imagining needs to be bigger, bolder, MORE EXTREME!!!! Grrr!
Which is why it will have lots of eye candy and stunts and spectacle, but zero charm.
Point Break is in cinemas this December.