Point Break: Bank Robbers With Bucket List

Posted: March 12, 2016 By Rob Campbell

2015 Point BreakAlthough panned by critics and roundly ignored at Hollywood award shows, there are a lot of truly spectacular Xcitelife moments in the 2015 remake of Point Break.

If you’re not familiar with the story, the IMDB synopsis reads, ‘A young FBI agent infiltrates an extraordinary team of extreme sports athletes he suspects of masterminding a string of unprecedented, sophisticated corporate heists’. The picture on the cover shows a couple of surfers riding a wave, or if you can imagine, a chase scene on a wave. The film is jam packed with spectacular experiences; its like the writers and producers sat around the map and made a list of the most epic things a human could do on planet Earth.

The original movie was made in 1991 and starred Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves. They had great chemistry and the film is still considered a surfing cult-classic, despite getting rather poor critical reviews and only medium box office.

Proximity Flying, on cliff looking over the courseIn the first film the surfing term ‘point break’ is explained as the place in the bay where a wave breaks as it hits a point of land jutting out from the coastline. Although this is very important for surfers, the film's theme explores the breaking point of man, and its interesting to note how the second film crudely expresses aloud the theme of the first.

In the 2015 remake, a 3D action thriller directed by Ericson Core which stars Édgar Ramírez, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer, Delroy Lindo and Ray Winstone, the meaning of the title Point Break has changed. The theme of the film was spoken aloud (which is terrible storytelling really) by one of the bad guys whose face is covered in scars. As the team hikes up a mountain with the express intention of jumping off the peak, he explains that 'point break' is the place where personal fear overcomes reason,point break is the place where fear overcomes reason in the thrill seeker which of course was the unstated theme in the original story.

Now the bad guys are much more extreme. They still surf and skydive, sure, but now they also snowboard down steep mountains and race dirt bikes away from rock slides; they base jump between cliffs and even do some extreme swimming and cliff diving. I doubt one person in a thousand could survive a leap from atop Angel Falls in Venezuela, but in this movie ...

time to jump off cliff, proximity flying, Point Break, 2015, action movieThe test-your-limits Xcitelife moments occur throughout the film, especially after those scenes in which the bad guys attempt to scare the living daylights out of the hero who fearlessly stays the course in every situation. The leap off the cliff to do Proximity Flying is artfully described by these fear mongers as "six seconds to fly or die", and when our hero survives we all feel a bond growing between the men. That sequence in the new movie really works.

Proximity Flying Looks Pretty Nifty, and Super Dangerous

proximity flying in 2015 Point Break movieThe modern wingsuit, first developed in the late 1990s, creates a surface area with fabric between the legs and under the arms. Wingsuits can also be called "birdman suits" and in most cases altitude is monitored using a hand-mounted altimeter and an audible warning device kept in the helmet. Controlling a parachute requires having arms and hands free to reach the brakes (control lines) and the leg wing also needs to be unzipped so flyers can better land on their feet. This critical acrobatic maneuver is very hard to perform in mid air.

So before you go off and sign up for wingsuit flying, know that wingsuiting is much harder and more dangerous than skydiving, with increased risks of flat-spins (uncontrollable spinning), burble (a vortex in the parachute deployment area), tail-strikes (hitting an aircraft's tail on exit), twists (a spinning parachute), and extra material to manage during a malfunction, and difficulty in depressurizing wings prior to parachute deployment. Failure to handle any of these issues usually results in fatal injuries. The actors did NOT go wingsuiting that day. Instead two highly trained professionals made the jump, and the other three flyers were added digitally in a studio in downtown Toronto.

These Bank Robbers Have a Bucket List Called the Ozaki Eight

Ozaki 8 bucket list in Point BreakIn the new remake, the criminals have strange motivations and the film suffers from a lack of believeability. Ostensibly the bad guys are hoping to complete a mission list of eight separate extreme tasks for which they need funding later when their billionaire financier has his bank account frozen. As the FBI agents are working out the next plot point, divining the scene of an armed robbery in Italy, they deliberate for a few moments over the Bucket List. The second in command at the bureau even says, "that's quite a bucket list". 

The Ozaki 8 are extreme human 'ordeals' that are listed in rather cryptic fashion to honour the planet "which is dying" the villains believe, and are quick to imply at every opportunity. Here is a complete list,

  1. Emerging Force The first Osaki 8 Ordeal the criminals committed was called Emerging Force.
  2. Birth of Sky “The only law is gravity.” This was shown as the criminals hijacked an airplane carrying money to the U.S.
  3. Awakening Earth The criminals disrupt a goldmine in Mexico
  4. Life of Water An epic surf scene marked the Life of Water ordeal with a once in a decade wave.
  5. Life of Wind The Life of Wind ordeal was accomplished in an amazing action scene involving wingsuits and incredible heights.
  6. Life of Ice Snow boarding down a virgin mountain, one skier dies.
  7. Master of Six Lives An interview with Edgar Ramirez, who played Johnny Utah, tells us that the Master of Six Lives ordeal means taking responsibility for more than oneself. No idea what specific action sequence depicted this in the movie though...
  8. Act of Ultimate Trust The back flip off Angel Falls?

surfing the biggest waves in a decade in 2015 Point Break Overall the film is not very good, critics are generous when they award it two and a half stars out of five.This was an American / Chinese co-production, and believe it or not this movie was released in China before it appeared on screen in the US. It was released in China on December 4, 2015 by DMG Entertainment, and in the United States it was released December 25, 2015 by Warner Bros Pictures.

The feature film has since been described as an overgrown Mountain Dew commercial that suffers from many missing story elements, not the least of which is a believable villain. Where is the on-screen chemistry that Patrick Swaze and Keanu Reeves brought to the original version? But of course the film was a financial success. The project is in profit; shot on a $105 million budget, the movie had already made $131 million in theatres by Feb 1st 2016. If you missed it, you can relax. This show is best viewed on your PC so you can replay the action scenes over and over, and then go to work on your own Bucket List here on Xcitelife.