P R O X I M I T Y : The Review

10 May 2017 2 Share

Sally Mac

Coastalwatch Digital Editor

COASTALWATCH | REVIEWS

P R O X I M I T Y 

A film by Taylor Steele
Photography by Todd Glaser
Produced by Michael Lawrence & Garage Entertainment 

The work of filmmaker Taylor Steele has shaped much of my life as a surfer. Momentum, Drifter, Castles In The Sky, Campaign, Here & Now and Innersection, just to name a few of my favourites. When first-look clips started dropping for his new production Proximity there was a build up of energy around the potential of the film to make a significant impact in a digital world that’s saturated with surf videos.

The film lived up to expectations. How could it not? The cast is so strong and the raw dialog between the world’s best and most respected surfers is naturally executed.

Steele doesn’t make surf films for a career anymore. He sees these projects as a way to reset himself and feel more connected to who he is and what he’s interested in.

In a chat before the film, he said that the idea for Proximity stemmed from simply seeing a photo of Rob Machado and Craig Ando standing next to each other. “I was like, man, they’re so similar in spirit, what would those guys do on a trip together? As a surf fan, I wanted to be in a room with them and be a fly on wall listening to what they’d ask each other and the answers they’d give.” And that’s what is the most unique aspect of this film - it’s the ultimate surfing fan-out.

Taylor Steele gets props alone for just logistically succeeding in making sure Kelly Slater and John John Florence, two of the world’s most sought after athletes, got on a flight together. Side note - he travelled to Hawaii and personally got them on that plane.

One of the opening scenes of the film is so simple, yet so metaphorically relevant to where they are both positioned in their careers right now. As they sit under a single dimmed light in what appears to be a tin shed on an island in the Pacific somewhere, they play chess. And who wins in a chess game between Johnny Florence and King Kelly?

There are a lot of questions asked and answered. Albee Layer queries Shane Dorian, “Do you think you have you caught the best wave of your life yet?” John John asks Kelly, “Do you still get nervous before heats?” I can’t even imagine what was left on the cutting room floor.

You could sit and watch the conversations alone, but what about the waves? In the 52 minutes there are amazing deserted island waves, half-foot slab waves, long, South American point breaks and waves that Albee Layer said might have been 30-foot smaller than Jaws but just as difficult to surf. You’ll get your fix and then you’ll want to book a trip.

Steele’s goal for the film was to make something more than a webisode. He wanted to convey something that felt unique and has an emotional charge to it. Proximity is another outstanding chapter in the filmography of Taylor Steele. I just wish it was longer. Bring on the outtakes.

You can catch P R O X I M I T Y in Australia this week

QLD Event Cinemas Pacific Fair - Thursday 11 May BUY TICKETS
NSW Event Cinemas Bondi Junction - Friday 12 May BUY TICKETS
VIC Village Jam Factory - Saturday 13 May BUY TICKETS

Tags: Video , review , proximity (create Alert from these tags)

blog comments powered by Disqus
Features
Andrew Mooney Shreds At Home & Abroad

Andrew Mooney Shreds At Home & Abroad

Highlights of an underrated Aussie shredlord

22 Jan 2020
Lennox Head's Nyxie Ryan Rips

Lennox Head's Nyxie Ryan Rips

Get to know her powerful rail game!

20 Jan 2020
Five Tips For When You Take On Bigger Waves, With Mark Visser

Five Tips For When You Take On Bigger Waves, With Mark Visser

From the renowned Ocean Warrior Course

1 19 Jan 2020
Recent

THE O'RIGINALS – Connor Lee

Surfing's in the blood

22 Jan 2020
Good Times On The Goldy With Brent Dorrington and Crew

Good Times On The Goldy With Brent Dorrington and Crew

18 Jan 2020
Two Electric Sessions on the Tweed Coast With the Future of Australian Surfing

Two Electric Sessions on the Tweed Coast With the Future of Australian Surfing

4 16 Jan 2020
Sean Doherty: Davey Cathels and the High Country Fire

Sean Doherty: Davey Cathels and the High Country Fire

3 14 Jan 2020
Nick Carroll: "The Only Thing I Could Compare It to Is War"

Nick Carroll: "The Only Thing I Could Compare It to Is War"

15 10 Jan 2020
Latest News

THE O'RIGINALS – Connor Lee

Surfing's in the blood

Sean Doherty: Davey Cathels and the High Country Fire

“It's been a pretty strange start to the year, that’s for sure.”

Nick Carroll: "The Only Thing I Could Compare It to Is War"

A southerly saved Phil Macca’s town. But what now?

Popular This Week

The WSL Has a New CEO, the Volcom Pipe Pro Gets Upgraded, and Russell Bierke Is a South Coast Tube Star

This Week In Surfing: Ten Things from Surfing & the Internet on the Week That Was January 17, 2020

Lennox Head's Nyxie Ryan Rips

Get to know her powerful rail game!

Go to Top