Friday, January 10, 2014

The Crash Reel - Its not how many times you fall, but how many times you get back up...

The Crash Reel
Release: December 13, 2013
Director: Lucy Walker
Ever see a new Documentary on HBO before bed and think, 'oh its not too long, I am just going to watch it'? Next thing its 2am and I am lying in bed, with a tear-stained face, not able to get Kevin Pearce or his family, out of my head. I am not a Snowboarder but I am a fan of snow sports in general, grew up skiing and hanging out with people that were considered dare devils, that built and went off huge jumps, hiked into back country and even a few that dared to jump small cliffs.  Though I never did those things, I was an avid snow skier and I GET what that speed and sport does to people, the feeling you get and the need to do it over and over.  Like a part of your life vein, it becomes a part of your survival you love it so much
                                                This movie is the story of Kevin Pearce 
2010 Olympic hopeful - literally winning competitions over Shaun White and his other fellow competitors. At 17 he was the dark horse that came out of nowhere, the amazing young talent that was shocking everyone.  As him and his friends were preparing for the Olympics, they took video of their training process, and you see tons of the video footage in this movie. 
 Which is why they were able to catch his tragic boarding crash on December 31st, 2009 - that injured his brain - on camera. This documentary follows the sport and how the bar is consistently raised in difficulty and the risk that is involved in a sport that creates such a shock value in the media - which honestly, was the part of the movie that I expected...

What I didn't expect, was to fall in love with the Pearce family as a whole, the way I did.  Kevin's amazing parents, Simon and Pia - were just what we all hope to become as parents.  The grace in which they handled this event that rocked their foundation...lovingly, at his side every second.  They are glue that holds the Pearce family together, with an amazing combination of unconditional love, support, spirituality and kind realism. 
  Who truly reached in and touched my heart were his brothers, David, Andrew and Adam, who made me weep with their tireless worry and support for their brother. David, who has Down Syndrome, spoke with SUCH maturity and wisdom when he would speak about both his disability and his sadness about his brothers injury.  Adam was in almost every hospital scene you saw, by his side in the recovery process.  At one point in the movie there is a family meeting about the fact that Kevin wanted nothing more than to get back on his snowboard and compete again.  The agony and pain on the family members faces and the tears and words that they use to express their feelings to him, is truly heart wrenching.  I found the way they juggled kindness and patience with sharing their pain and worry for Kevin, both inspiring and astounding.
The movie was released last month and is on HBO right now. Even if you aren't a fan of snowboarding, its really not about that - its about the human spirit and the struggle between knowing what is safe and respecting our family and our need to do what inspires us and what takes our souls to that place that no words can understand. 
RATING: ***** 5 stars. SEE THIS MOVIE

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