Dogtown and Z-Boys: Deluxe Edition Stacey Peralta

With the upcoming theatrical release of Lords of Dogtown — a starchy-looking, fictionalised account of the '70s Zephyr Skate/Surf Team — comes the cash-grabby video re-release of its inspiration: the excellent documentary Dogtown and Z-Boys. The Z-Boys were a group of surfers who grew up in the grimy bits of Southern California near the Pacific Ocean Park pier (affectionately dubbed "Dogtown" by those fortunate or unfortunate enough to live there). They took the basic tenets of surfing to the concrete and revolutionised skateboarding. Combining archival footage from renowned Skateboarder Magazine photojournalist Craig Stecyk with interviews from the fully-grown members of the Zephyr Team (minus the M.I.A. Chris Cahill), Dogtown and Z-Boys is an involving, if not overreaching, history lesson. Since it was directed by Stacey Peralta (a Z-Boy himself), there's an unavoidable swagger to it all. People who disliked the film criticised it for being arrogant, but what did they expect? This is a film made by the grubby kids who consider themselves the forefathers of modern skateboarding and, for the most part, rightly so. Peralta's Zephyr cronies (most notably Tony Alva and Jay Adams) helped establish a multi-million dollar industry by giving skateboarding the attitude, look and spirit it needed to remove itself from the squeaky clean board culture of the '60s. And they know it. The film is scrappy and stylish, just like the kids and the scene it portrays. Everything about it harkens back to its '70s roots, with an on-point soundtrack and interviews with folks who grew up influenced by the Team (Tony Hawk, Henry Rollins, Ian MacKaye and narrator Sean Penn). If you already own the original DVD, there's not much to justify re-buying it. The re-release offers all the same features, with the only additions being a few tacked on Lords of Dogtown promo pieces. These lazy accompaniments include two five-minute "Webisodes" about the making of Lords that can just as easily be found on the internet, as well as a "sneak peek" that consists of Tony Alva and Stacey Peralta (he's the screenwriter on this one) hyping the movie. Regardless of how crappy Lords of Dogtown is destined to be, Dogtown and Z-Boys is essential viewing for anyone who has ever touched a skateboard or is interested in a solid piece of work about the beginning of the movement. Plus: raw footage, trailers, alternate ending. (Columbia/Sony)