MARV Takes A Stand Against Surf Film Monotony - Stab Mag
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MARV Takes A Stand Against Surf Film Monotony

A filmmaking style you can’t learn from Youtube.

cinema // Dec 28, 2020
Words by Jack Mutschler
Reading Time: 2 minutes

The issue:

Repetitive surf material. All fucking day. One Youtube upload after another: suitable waves, expert surfing, but no pizzazz. Truth be told, anyone could become a surf content creator nowadays. All you cinematographers, hush, I’m not done speaking.

If Joe Blow drops a few racks on a decent setup, befriends a talented surfer, and watches an Adobe Youtube tutorial, he can make a successful video. Catchy title, attractive thumbnail, and just like that, Mr. Blow has 100k views. Is he considered a legit filmmaker? No, but a few months of practice, and it might pay the rent.

The solution:

Amongst the carbon copies, there always lies a gem. Usually, that diamond in the rough is an indie flick. B-roll clips shot on film, welcoming shaved heads and painted nails to the party. The kind of video that looks like it’s going to ask to bum a cigarette.

This MARV excerpt is fucking brilliant. Honestly, for the first few minutes, I thought I was having an aneurysm. After sifting through surf videos for hours on end, the last thing I wanted to do was witness a rinky-dink surf video go off the tracks. I walked away from the computer but never pressed pause. A little pot, a little booze, mentally clocking out, or at least that’s what I thought. A familiar tune had caught my attention. “Doe Doe and a Skunk” by Suga Free. A brief double-take and now I’m viewing quality footage of Noah Waggy laying down the law. Confused, but ultimately baited back to my chair.

What made MARV so entertaining?

Film-heavy, raw surfing, and a hint of skating. Absolute punks. A mattress on the floor kind of crew, no bed frame, and no studio-backed budget. Just a refreshing work of art with a peculiar approach. Slow-mo creates a blocky video with a low frame rate, which looks like a sped-up PowerPoint presentation. The kind of clip that triggers PTSD from a freshman year acid trip. Somehow the savant filmer Mike Mckay made it work.

Fuck me; I didn’t even mind the thrown in slideshow crafted from a roll of film. It was all pieced together so nicely with the soundtrack it was hard to complain.

Kudos to the MARV crew on their project, seems like they had fun making it. This was more engaging than any of the xeroxed slop I had fought with all day. An original film, not a highlight reel. Turn the lights off, spark up a sprinkle of the devil’s lettuce, and get high on MARV.

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