“You lose yourself out there, and you find yourself out there.” That’s what Bodhi (Patrick Swayze) teaches Johnny Utah (Keanu Reeves) regarding the lessons an individual learns while surfing, and it couldn’t be closer to the truth. This is precisely the reason behind why surfers around the globe are so addicted to getting wrecked by waves, catching bombs, and simply looking for a ride with mother nature; to pay a visit with God almighty. Pay attention to surfers the next time you’re at your favorite beach; they’re practically running across the sand wearing their wetsuits and carrying their boards; they can’t wait to get into the cold water and paddle their way into the ocean, patiently waiting their turn for a ride. The ocean calls their names; as if the surfers are drawn to the edge of Earth; they can’t help themselves; they must get off of land and immerse themselves into the sea.
Point Break (1991) is directed by Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker), and it’s about two F.B.I. Agents, Johnny Utah and Pappas (Gary Busey) who track down a crew of surfers that could be potential suspects responsible for a slew of recent bank robberies overtaking Los Angeles. Pappas detects a substance on the floor of a crime scene that the lab traces back as Sex Wax – a material surfers buff on the deck of their boards for grip and traction. Point Break is a timeless classic and though it was remade in 2015, the original version from 1991 still holds as superior and has stood the test of time. Point Break is written by Rick King (Kickboxer 3: The Art of War, Prayer of the Rollerboys) and W. Peter Illif (Patriot Games, Varsity Blues) who penned a wild and adventurous screenplay filled with tremendous insight into the world of surfing intertwined with bank robberies and law enforcement.
Surfing is obviously not for everybody, but those who dare to try the beautiful water sport become sea suckers because they grow accustomed to the eye-opening and ever-humbling experience of freezing your genitals and releasing tension within your body. When a surfer enters the sea, he or she leaves their old self completely behind and becomes wholly alert and one with mother nature as their survival tactics rise to their fullest effect. When a surfers expedition has ended, and after they’ve embarked upon the journey of paddling back to the shore with sore shoulders and dangling arms, they walk along the sand of the beach a revitalized and refreshed human being; a kind person who is free from the anxieties and pressures of life, exhaling breaths of gratitude.
Point Break, though excellent in its execution of directing and cinematography, seems to impress more with its perspective on the healing aspects of surfing as a form of physical and mental therapy. It’s a daring film with instances of romantic beauty and depictions of the human condition. It has the power to make novices and intermediates alike, to drive to the coast and get wrecked by waves because they know an old-fashioned ass whoopin’ by mother nature is always necessary for humans in life. “You gotta be crazy to surf.” Johnny Utah says. “Yeah, but are you crazy enough?” Bodhi replies.
Point Break (1991) is available for streaming On Demand.