Vladimir Film Festival


Off-program / Film

Maybe inter­est­ingly enough, European skate­board­ing icon, Swedish inde­pend­ent film­maker and Polar Skate Co. C.E.O. Pon­tus Alv once stated, as early as twelve years ago: 

This kid right here in front of you, in ten years, will be an Olympic champion.

Talk­ing about Oskar Rozen­berg Hall­berg a.k.a. Oski, this did turn out to be cor­rectly proph­esied (but really no more, no less than everything we’re all used to from Pon­tus) and this eponym­ous doc­u­ment­ary film by Jonath­an Lomar just so hap­pens to cap­ture this cru­cial devel­op­ment­al trans­ition through­out a year-long sneak dive into Oski’s real­ity as it bru­tally morphs from the one of a sim­ul­tan­eously excep­tion­al and aver­age Swedish hard­core teen­age skate rat into a more def­in­ite-look­ing path towards the Olympic jour­ney. Oski seeks its escape from the way-too-com­mon trap of select­ive glor­i­fic­a­tion into cri­ti­cism of what the film­maker describes as the spor­ti­fic­a­tion of skate­board­ing — ori­gin­ally a misfit’s activ­ity, now mon­et­ar­ily prof­it­able and argu­ably restric­ted as far as in its essence by the phant­as­mal exist­ence of reg­u­lat­ory codes. The emphas­is really is equally on the leeches, and the res­ult­ing tor­ment and tempta­tion towards com­prom­ise, mak­ing for an invit­ing pop­u­lar win­dow into the practice’s most prom­in­ent dilem­mas. Oski’s tal­ent here serves as a prism to high­light what really does mat­ter in skate­board­ing, and what maybe doesn’t.