Surfing from channel to channel until they passed even Channel No 5, these action heros take the viewer on a whirlwind tour of insane stunts and unbelievable masquerades. Action sequences include surfing Montreal’s massive Mavric wave, hair boating in California and the Southeast as well as an insane freewheel off a huge waterfall.
Corran, Nico Chasing, Steve Fisher and Dan Campbell take starring roles in this short but action packed video that is watchable time and time again. The editing is quite jumpy, fast – sort of MTV style, but the boating is good.
Search for the G-Spot
“Searching” is Corran Addison’s 1st attempt (I think) at making an instructional freestyle video. All of the major moves are covered and broke down into easy to follow instructions; narration is backed up by seeing the move for real and through the use of animation. The computer animation is put to good use showing how a move is pulled step by step without the distraction of real water. This in itself puts “Searching” at the forefront of kayak instructional videos.
Although a video can’t ensure you can pull the moves (only getting on the water will), you may be able to pick up some top tips from this great video.
Genes Advanced Whitewater Technique
Genes Advanced Whitewater Teachniques is another little gem from Westgarth TV, this time covering Grade IV/V skills like running big drops, boofing and slides.
GENES, the third in Simon Westgarth’s Gene17 series. This time aimed at Advanced White water technique for running Class 4 and beyond. The focus is on paddling slides, drops and waterfalls, with the introduction of key skills such as flaring the boat through a drop, plus the development of boofin’ and promotion of driving the boat through the rapids. The central theme is the clarity of vision an advanced paddler requires to be able to get more from the river, their boat and themselves.
The plain and simple red and white colour scheme of the box is continued throughout the video, and is great as it doesn’t distract from the move you should be watching. Summaries are all nice and clear, and highlight the main points. What was particularly good was the use of animated arrows and bars throughout the video, showing both lines and body actions.
Throw away your playboat, as you defiantly wont need it for this stuff. This is steep at its steepest. Paddlers looking to take things up a notch or two will be in their element, with boofing, flaring and general things like body positioning covered in great detail. First the skill is outlined, and then broken down in to its separate movements, before being put back together. Slow motion is used to great effect, as are the funky arrows mentioned earlier. My favourite feature had to be the “ghost paddler” where two clips were overlaid showing contrasting techniques and highlighting clearly what they aimed to. In many of the segments there is also a section highlighting what happens if you do one or more things wrong. This is one of the more valuable parts of the video.
The tunes in the background are suitably chilled and don’t distract from the instruction, which is good, as the video is all about instruction. Some of the tunes are avaliable to download from www.westgarth.tv.
You also get a copy of “Adventures in Loonerland” with the DVD, which is starting to look bit old now with all those long pointy playboats, but is still a good watch, and as its free, don’t complain.
Overall, I really enjoyed watching this DVD, although watching the whole lot in one go may not be the best way to learn. A nice crisp package, and if you learn nothing else from it, “tuck forward”!! GENES cost about 25 quid and is available from most good kayaking shops, or direct from Gene17. Also available are Genotype, which is total beginner up to basic white water, and genetic which deals with progressive white water skills.
Simon Westgarth runs Gene17 kayaking, who do holidays, coaching and all manner of stuff. Go to www.gene17.com for more info.
My copy of Corran Addison’s new movie arrived safely from Canada. The order was made via Corran’s site www.2imagine.net and my Pay pal account. I ordered the DVD version which meant I had to have a multi region DVD player since it is a NTSC version as apposed to the UK PAL format. Most UK machines can handle this but check yours before you order.
The movie starts of with a very Python-esque title sequence before Corran’s narration begins as we are introduced to the main paddlers and the “plan”. The first piece of kayak action takes place on the Island of Corsica, with a number of impressive creek type runs being shown. A number of probably very painful wipe outs are also shown. Proving that all paddlers can have a little bad luck, even the pro’s.
Throughout the 1hr 4mins of the show you get to see quick snippets of proto type boats being tested or standard boats being tweaked. This includes the heating, chopping and welding of one boat before it gets put through its paces on the water.
The action then moves to France and Hawaii sur Rhone where some awesome aerial moves are pulled off on the monster wave. At this point most other Kayak movies end at around 45 minutes but we then quickly move on to Italy for some more steep technical runs with a number of seriously close calls before heading off on a road trip through Russia to war torn Chetznia. Vodka, guards, guns and bikini clad women feature heavily before the band of paddlers hit the river for some more extreme runs.
The next venue is the Island of Hawaii where Corran searches out big surf and the infamous wave Jaws. Lots of big wave action including loads of aerial moves thrown in for good measure. The shots of Corran’s 6ft aerial air screw as shown in Kayak Session and on the web are also include, but sadly conditions for Jaws were not perfect. While in Hawaii we get another glimpse of some proto surf boats being tweaked by a Surf Board guru before they are put to work in the huge surf.
Finally we arrive back in Canada to the sounds of the Grease theme tune and the grunt of Corran’s custom beach buggy before heading off to the big water for the final hit of extreme paddling.
End game makes a clear departure from the kayak movies of the past. Its sometimes tongue in cheek approach to the “pro-boater” lifestyle is refreshing as are the scenes of when things go wrong. A strong feature is Corran’s philosophy on boating, pro-boaters and kayak movies. This is on top of End Game being a great video to watch.
I like the whole idea of this video, for the moment it is something new and fresh. The concept of it being available on DVD is also appealing. The whole package is very professional including the standard of the printed DVD (see image). The ability to jump from scene to scene, pause the action in perfect clarity has to be a bonus.
Whether or not End Game will be available in UK stores I don’t know but PeakUK probably know the answer. Ordering online was easy and painless as was the amount of time needed to receive the goods. Having watched it would I watch it again? Yes. Turning back the clock would I buy it again? Yes.