If you’re a loyal Keanu Reeves fan or extremely attached to the original Point Break you will be notably bugged by this extreme sport focused remake. If, however, you’re a new generation or have absolutely no attachment to the original then you might just get a kick out of it. If the hair raising daredevil scenes don’t appeal to you then at the very least you’ll get to enjoy the view as blonde Johnny Utah and brunette Bodhi tackle pretty mountains and CGI looking waves while they show off their bad ass tattoos and sparkly blue eyes every chance they get.
Personally, I fall into the first category of “attached to the original”. Which is why I didn’t rush out to watch it. I mean, sure, the original had a fairly basic plot and could have been decked out with more risk and sharper dialogue but hey it worked. And I hate when films that work get a reboot for the sake of a reboot (or, you know, for the sake of a quick cash injection). Just change the character names and call it a sequel. Seriously. They could have made the main character a cousin of the original Johnny Utah or had a joke about his nickname being from the original Point Break while renaming the other characters altogether. It wouldn’t have made a difference as the casting and character portrayals were strong enough to distance themselves from the original anyway.
BUT putting the fact that it is a remake aside… if you look at it as a stand alone movie and ignore its predecessor for a moment Point Break (2015) isn’t terrible and actually has a lot going on. We first meet Johnny Utah ” Utah is a nickname my classmates got off Youtube” on a mountain doing a motor cross stunt with his mate. He makes his living doing extreme stunts and posting it on Youtube for his sponsors (a far cry from injured footballer to FBI but Sssshhh we’re not talking about the original, remember?) Then something goes awry and Utah finds his way to the FBI training grounds as a new recruit seeking redemption from his guilt and a new start for himself.
The interesting thing about this movie is it’s not about catching big waves and robbing banks to fund the surfer lifestyle. Yes, surfing and heists appear throughout but it’s only a small part of it (another reason this should have been a sequel). The main motivation for Bodhi and his peeps (I forget their names apart from Roach) is to chase the eight. I won’t go into detail as it explains it quite well in the film but basically it’s about giving back to the earth and finding enlightenment if you manage to complete all eight tasks which in themselves are extreme and require a great deal of expensive looking gear and sporty know-how.
The not so interesting thing about this movie is the love interest. If you can call it that. While Teresa Palmer acted perfectly fine as Samsara (not a character from the original) it felt like she was only there to distract and deliver tidbits of well timed information rather than to bond with Utah or give him someone to fight for. Frankly, if you cut her from the plot you wouldn’t lose anything. Except maybe the viewership of bikini obsessed individuals. Because sex sells apparently.
And finally, the “interesting but I’m also kinda on the fence with this” thing about this movie is how they reworked Pappas. He’s much more subdued with a tough and unapproachable outer shell but good guy centre. You know, compared to Busey’s comical and some what explosive portrayal. Not sure which I like more. Though I feel the “new” Pappas is more realistic and likable which wins him some points. Plus he pretty much keeps out of the way and lets the rookie probationary cop (Utah) do his thing with not much more than an obligatory grumble and a stern disapproving look. Irresponsible? Maybe. Handy to the plot progression? Why yes. Yes it is.
So there you have it. If you were on the fence before reading this… I’m positive I haven’t helped you in the slightest. But hey, it’s always good to watch a movie you’re unsure about. That way you’ll have something to vent about if you hate it. And, at the end of the day, if you have nothing to complain about EVER then there’s something wickedly non-human about you and you should get some help.
Happy movie watching and thanks for reading my rambles.