A written review of Level 1 Productions' 2013 release, Partly Cloudy. After last year's release of "Sunny", Level 1 turns do the darker side of the weather. Ski Movie Review: ***Level 1 – Partly Cloudy*** Spoiler Alert! | Unofficial Networks

Ski Movie Review: ***Level 1 - Partly Cloudy*** Spoiler Alert!

Ski Movie Review: ***Level 1 - Partly Cloudy*** Spoiler Alert!

ALL

Ski Movie Review: ***Level 1 - Partly Cloudy*** Spoiler Alert!

By

What is Level 1 famous for? Revolutionary urban skiing, jaw dropping park shredding, deafening slick soundtracks, and out of the ordinary yet one of a kind presentation that leaves you confused at where the limits and bounds of urban skiing really are. As insane as much of that sounds, Level 1’s 2013 release “Partly Cloudy” follows the path of it’s predecessors and redefines what’s possible with a bungie cord and a pair of skis.

Level 1 takes you right back to the 1940’s with their black and white newsreel intro. Instantly classic war time music blasts and a general compilation of humorous activities, giant crashes and shenanigans ensue. Guns, triple tomahawks and a giant double nose grab spread eagle from Parker White highlight this seriously-retro styled epic. The scene soon transitions into serious business as Will Wesson ramps it up and hits 4 long handrails in 1 continuos shot while stellar music tones in the background. The segment is a finely tuned work from the editor and the innovation sets this piece apart with shots of Wesson jibbing a massive tree trunk as well as a frozen water slide. The impact of the opening segment of “Partly Cloudy” threw me onto the edge of my seat and didn’t let go until long after the film ended.
Next comes a segment of equal if not even better esteem than the opener. Ahmet Dadali showcases that he is truly a force to be reckoned with on the urban ski scene. With the quintessential rap beats rampaging along with him, Ahmet takes another page out of the book of innovation using trees for giant hand plants, church door steps for booters to backflip, and pulling off a wallride to one footer rail slide. Locations switch and Ahmet turns to his old tricks of backcountry booters and steezy cliff drops, both of which are mind-bogglingly MASSIVE. All the while the entire segment is once again edited with superb skill and fluidity making this segment one your going to wanna watch over and over.
Then yet another jamaican-reggae tune to accompany the unparalleled style and steeze of Adam Delorme. Bursting in with an epic slow-motion sled shot and an absolutely monstrous double backy in the backcountry, it’s clear from the start that Delorme has produced yet another unforgettable segment, becoming a key instrument in every Level 1 movie in the past 3 years. The segment focus’s on the usual visually pleasing pillow lines, deep powder and giant kickers that Delorme of course utilizes in what looks like the most effortless way possible. Personally, I don’t think there’s a skier out there that can challenge the sophisticated style this Breckenridge local has to offer. The segment is capped off by the best usage of cinematography in the film, an extremely slow-mo shot of the cleanest butter 360 you will ever see.
After these 3 opening segments (which were by far the best in the film), there’s a nice urban segment followed by a trip to Finland. As regular as a scandinavian trip sounds, the boys from Level 1 head there to meet with none other than the teenage internet sensations of Real Skifi. These guys are infamous for being by far the most creative skiers out there and they along with the crew get up to a new style of shenanigans never before premiered in a high budget ski film. To even begin to try to put into words some of the stuff these guys do in the film is impossible, and this is something you guys HAVE to see for yourself. One of the main highlights from the segment can be seen in the trailer above, an insane backflip to straight up stall on a hand-rail.
A few segments pass from locations such as Bralorne, BC and athletes like Wiley Miller and LJ Strenio and although these are good and entertaining, there’s nothing too special about them. These are followed by quite a neat segment from Banks Gilberti who seems to be the master at steezy 360 hand drags. Then comes a very short but very well edited segment of Tanner Rainville shredding some super deep pow. The music and black and white effect of this one feels extremely seductive. Average segments of Bibby and Riley Leboe, Whistler park sesh, LSM, Les Arcs and Chris Logan pass by with a short segment of a giant kicker in Sun Valley adding a bit of entertainment value.
The film winded back down into the 1940’s style credits and I was left with a MUCH more satisfied taste compared to PBP’s “Tracing Skylines“. Personally I prefer big mountain skiing over park and urban any day but Level 1 truly found the perfect way to demonstrate how entertaining and revolutionary the urban scene of today is. From the get-go “Partly Cloudy” never lets up, it never slows down and just keeps jamming down backcountry booters, slick urban rails and much more down your throat. Although “After Dark” and “Sunny” had their place in the top films of their respect years, “Partly Cloudy” surpasses both of them in all aspects and claims the top spot of Level 1’s past films.

The Breakdown:

Skiing skill/Overall Talent: 9

The athletes in Level 1’s inventory are the best Urban skiers in the world right now, no doubt about it. Their park athletes come close as well, giving “Partly Cloudy” a superb 9 for talent. 

Entertainment Value: 8.5

The non-stop action, humorous cut-scenes and bits that will simply leave a grin on your face allow for this film a border-line amazing 8.5 for entertainment value.

Soundtrack: 8

The head-on assault of music is most perfectly displayed in the first three segments as well as Rainville’s powder adventure. The rest are somewhat off and mediocre, but it seems Level 1 has followed the exact same pattern of the previous years; some undeniably perfect tunes and some very odd ones that probably shouldn’t belong in a ski film.

Editing: 8

The segments are all very well edited, most notably Wesson and Dadali’s. There’s loads of humour and correlation between the shredding and the music which just leaves the viewers pleased and stimulated. A fantastic editing job, but nothing too-too special which places the points a solid score of 8.

 

Originality/Innovation: 9

Jibbing trees and waterslides, using a 1940’s newsreel style intro and obviously the addition of the Real Skifi team needless to say places these guys high up on the Originality spectrum. Easy 9, no doubt about it.

 

Cinematography (Bonus Points): 5

Not an abundance of cinematography found in this film, but the Delorme butter plus many more of the hand drag’s and slow-mo beauty shots cannot be overlooked. 5 Bonus points easy.

 

Overall: 8.5

 

Unreal talent, non-stop entertainment, killer soundtrack, solid editing and pure creativity give “Partly Cloudy” the proud title of being the best Level 1 Productions film to date.

– Chris De Jager 

More Unofficial Networks