movie that cashes in on the early 90's inline skating fad! What could possibly be better than that? You'll undoubtedly get your answer about thirty minutes into this mess.
We're first introduced to San Diego native hipster Mitchell Goosen (Shane McDermott) while he's in the middle of doing what he does best...SURFING! Mitchell speaks in a strange surfer tongue that remains undecipherable to almost every other character in the movie. After "hanging ten" Mitchell returns to his home where he learns that his parents are leaving for a three month excursion to Australia while he has to continue his pursuit of knowledge in Cincinnati where he'll be staying with his aunt, uncle and cousin. Major bummer dude!
For a cool surfer like Mitchell Cincinnati turns out to be a frozen, Midwestern hell but this doesn't prevent him from inexplicably packing his surfboard along. His family includes the lady who played the secretary in "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" (Edie McClurg) as his Aunt Irene and Gen X slacker Seth Green as his unbelievably lame cousin Wiley.
Mitchell has trouble fitting in at his new high school where he's mocked unmercifully by a group of jocks, a gang of street toughs, and a "way too old to be in high school" Jack Black. They come up with a bunch of cruel nicknames and treat Mitchell to a host of shenanigans that lead to his increasing depression and self-doubt. Things quickly change however when he remembers that he brought along his Roller Blades! Soon enough he's on the go and wooing the sister of one of his antagonists.
Things remain bitter for Mitchell until a street hockey tournament provides him the opportunity to gain the respect of his foes by "pantsing" a snobby rich kid. The finale finds Mitchell and his new friends pitted in an unbelievably dangerous race against a rival gang of rich kids. The race actually results in one kid getting hit by car in a scene that seems too brutal to have been choreographed. Let's just say that it ends with Mitchell a little bit wiser of his place in the world and in all the great things a seemingly boring town like Cincinnati has to offer.
Unfortunately on me the lessons of this movie were completely wasted. Inline skating still seems lame. I still think that acceptance issues and class struggles aren't easily solved with the aid of dramatic race sequences. And above all else, Cincinnati still seems like an incredibly dreary place to spend one’s time.