Dr Paul O'Connor
Hong Kong/Ethnicity/Everyday Life
Lecturing in Anthropology at CUHK
Author of "Islam in Hong Kong: Muslims and Everyday Life in China's World City"
Hong Kong University Press 2012
This blog discusses my research on Muslims, religious minorities, and ethnicity in Hong Kong. It also looks at social theory, and everyday life academia, issues of multiculturalism, racism in Hong Kong, visual culture, skateboarding culture, and prefigurative politics.
contact: Dr Paul O'Connor
The artwork for the Danny Way skateboard documentary looks like a standard Hollywood movie. We have the entirely unrealistic (and yet he really has done this) jump from the helicopter on to a skateboard, juxtaposed with the great wall of China (which he also jumped over) and his chiselled profile.
It could be that Danny Way’s Waiting for Lightning eclipses The Bones Brigade Documentary as this years most popular mainstream skateboard movie. And it is with this declaration that we have really reached a cultural shift. Now I can talk about ‘mainstream’ skateboard movies. A rather curious development as I remember first seeing Danny Way in the very much under-produced H-Street Hokus Pokus (There’s only one D’Way). So whilst the video below talks about the edgy D. Way psyche that enables the man to dream up and execute mind boggling achievments on a skateboard, I am in awe at the era of skateboarding that his career spans.
The zeitgeist of mainstream skateboard docu-movies, is for me, as a veteran skateboarder, really most welcome. But I can’t help feeling mesmerised by the changing times. In the case of Waiting for Lightning, this is even more exceptional as it is carried by one singular persona. Both Dog Town and Z-Boys and The Bones Brigade Documentary are about skateboard teams, and the latter one even charts the rise of the ubiquitous Tony Hawk. I do like skateboard nostalgia, but these movies really chart a coming of age for skateboarding and a declaration to the world about a sense of real (sub)-cultural continuity. By writing our past and having the access to mediums to actually preserve and present it there is the reproduction of a real skateboarding historiography.
Here we have a bunch of skateboarding notables talking about Danny Way and the movie.
And here is the old Hokus Pokus video cover with Matt Hensely. Here is also an interview with why Mr Hensley walked away from skateboarding.