06 Sep Sian Sessions: Film Review
In the age of the Internet, it is not often that a PG film captures one’s attention, and leaves you feeling better after viewing. Sian Sessions is so good that it manages to hit the spot.
In 2017 Australian-based firm Deus Ex Machine, in partnership with Garage Productions, released this 30-minute surfing feature. The Dustin Humphrey film is a master class on how to make good cinema. It does well to connect with anyone into bike and boarding subcultures. Surfers, swimmers, sailors and those who love good music will most likely find it appealing.
Worth a watch
Hours of unused surfing footage, gathered while shooting the film South to Sian, were linked together in this director’s cut. The Instagram generation will appreciate the selected filters used throughout. Thank colourist Matt Fezz for that.
Expect to see barrel rides, carving and hang tens. All jargon for impressive surfing tricks. The footage of endless swell also strikes a chord. It is an unforced visual story, even though no words are spoken, the film says a lot. The beaches of Indonesia glitter and are perhaps the real stars. Seeing those waters being showcased in this way, give’s one an urge to visit and then revisit.
At times though, ship-themed cutaway shots such as a sail being lifted or anchor being dropped leaves the viewer unsure of where that came from. Perhaps inserted for cinematic effect. Or puzzle pieces to the longer full-length 2016 feature mentioned above.
Replay when needed
For some reason, Sian Sessions reminded me of the retro rock song Gigantic by the Pixies. An established surfing, skating and road trip anthem. Songs in this soundtrack are a fitting mix for these activities, and feature artists such as The Jim Mitchells and Big Scary.
As the credits roll, and a singer-songwriter melody plays in the background. One just wonders why it had to end. The film deserves to be stored in your cloud or external hard drive. Then replayed whenever you’re in need of being reminded what life can be like when living in the Southern Hemisphere.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Sian Sessions teaser
See also our previous film review about Given.