Sunday, December 7, 2008

Movie Review: Latitudes

Freeride Foundation wants to help you stock your DVD case with rad riding movies. However, we're getting picky. We only want to sell and support production companies and films that support women riders. That's one of the reasons we brought in The Way Bobby Sees It--Wendy Todd was a co-producer and she played a large part in getting Bobby prepared for the race. Believe it or not, there are several movies from this year that include significant women's riding segments.

The first movie we're reviewing is DH Productions' hi-def film Latitudes. Lisa Myklak turned me on to this flick. She'd told me that she and Emily Johnston were at Woodward West, and were fighting for camera time. When the two girls decided to hit a huge gap jump, they immediately had everyone's attention. The resulting segment shows Lisa and Emily ripping singletrack with the guys, hucking off of Woodward's stunts, and of course, boosting the gap. While I still have a few more films to watch from this season, this segment strikes me as the most comprehensive women's gravity segment possibly since the Marla and Missy years.

Lisa and Emily aren't the only ones to get some air time. Hannah Hannah appears early in the film, riding with the Cannondale Cut crew. The only problem is that none of the riders in the segment receive credits. So, if you don't put 2 and 2 together and realize that Latitudes' main sponsor is Cannondale, and that Mick is a Cannondale Cut rider, and that the girl riding with them must be his ripping freerider wife Hannah, you'd be left wondering who this anonymous female shredder could be. The movie came with a second disc, which includes the Nomads TV show created from Latitudes' France riding chapter. Hannah is introduced here, but who watches Disc 2 first?

Amelia Colasurdo has a short but cool big-mountain-style segment from Southern Utah too. She's also the caboose on the Salt Lake City chapter's singletrack segments. She has a much larger role in the Nomads TV show created from the Southern Utah chapter, which is also found on the second disc.

As for the rest of the movie, there are impressive big mountain and dirt jumping performances from JD Swanguen and the Van Dines, and cool urban and dirt jump segments with Aaron Chase, Jeff Lenosky, Dave Smutok, and Kyle Ebbett to name just a few of Latitudes' featured athletes.

We're stoked to see a movie with more than one female rider and with girls showing up in several segments throughout the film. The industry has a long way to go to when it comes to incorporating ripping female riders into mountain bike films, but at least we're seeing some progress.

We're working on bringing Latitudes to Freeride Foundation, but in the meantime, you can grab a copy at

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