Patrick Swayze in Point Break

I was saddened by the news of Patrick Swayze’s death this past summer. I told myself that week that I would go back and watch some of my favorite films he made. Of course the phenomenon Dirty Dancing (first vhs to ever sell a million copies) came to mind. As did Ghost. But the movie I really wanted to go back and see was Point Break (1991). I had a fond memory of the film, and I enjoyed seeing it referenced in the wonderful comedy Hot Fuzz.
Going back and seeing Point Break, I found that it is a flawed film. But many things about it work. And at the heart of it is the character of Bodhi that Swayze so beautifully plays.
Bodhi is a cult figure among the surfers. Incredibly bright, he also understands the goings on of life on a deeper level than most. He has a connection to the ocean that is spiritual. As a bank robber, he is never greedy. By never hitting the vault, he just takes what he needs. With each successful heist, he is championing the lifestyle of people who are fed up with the system. How awesome is that?
The film can only tread that line for so long. A character this dangerous has to pay for his crime sooner or later. It’s a shame. A more daring film may have had Johnny Utah understand the wisdom of Bodhi and decide to join forces with this surfer Robin Hood.
The end of the film shows Bodhi going for the biggest surf ever, riding the waves at Bells Point, Australia that only come twice every century. It was moving for me to watch Bodhi disappear into the ocean, as the man who played him has left this earth. God bless you, Patrick Swayze, and happy surfing on the other side.

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About kartiksingh

I have been living in Paris, France since 1996. I was born to Sikh parents who immigrated to the USA. I grew up outside of Kansas City, and at 18 went to Washington DC with the intention of becoming a diplomat. Five years later, I arrived in Paris and found my life purpose: to make films that bring hope, insight, and inspiration to the world. My debut feature film Callback premieres in September 2010 in New York. For more details on where you can see my films, look for me at http://www.facebook.com/#!/kartik.singh
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One Response to Patrick Swayze in Point Break

  1. kartiksingh says:

    PS on Patrick Swayze. The same week I watched Point Break again, I went to you tube and found the last interview he did with Barbara Walters. In the second half of that program, they revealed that Swayze smoked his whole life. I have known people like this. Once they get sick, they continue smoking. They believe that to not smoke would mean to no longer enjoy life. I have also known athletes who smoke. The physical shape and dancing Swayze did definitely put him in that category. Many live with the misconceived notion that their heavy sports training will make up for and purify their smoking and drinking. Dharmendra, who starred in Sholay, was a big abuser of his body. He would drink until 4 in the morning, and just an hour later be pumping iron, sweating profusely. His intense workout schedule was sacred, and he never missed a day. I imagine it was the same routine for Swayze.

    What if. What if he wasn’t a smoker? He’d have lived ten years longer, or maybe forty years longer, no one can know. In that report, they said the smoking likely triggered his cancer. So his bad habit was the direct cause of his badly suffering and then dying at 57. To me, there is no judgement in this. We all do things that are bad for our bodies. I just think it’s a shame, especially for an artist. With ten extra years, maybe Swayze would have had one or two great performances. But when it comes to destructive behavior, everybody believes they are the exception to the rule. That they have some kind of special exemption from the realities of life and death. And none of us do, of course.

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