If you’re an adrenaline junkie the one film you should be seeing this year is Point Break. A group of extreme athletes risk life and limbswhile performing never before seen acts of daring adventure. Point Break features some insane stunts and absolutely none of them took place while an actor dangled from some wires in front of a green screen.
“This is an in-camera movie,” states Andrew A. Kosove, one of the film’s producers and also a competitive triathlete. “What that means for audiences is that they’re going to see stunts captured on camera as they really happened, on actual locations, by real athletes. “So if you’re looking to “follow the line” and walk in the steps of some of the biggest thrill seekers on the planet, where should you go?
You can’t have Point Break without surfing, and the film is bookended with some of the most incredible surfing ever caught on film. The first of these scenes was filmed near Tahiti in French Polynesia, at the famed Teahupoo break. At the time of filming this area was seeing some mountainous swells that made for some really dramatic sequences.
It’s an area that regularly sees record breaking surfing. In 2000 it was where Laird Hamilton surfed the “heaviest wave” ever ridden, while in 2003 Malik Joyeux surfed one of the largest waves ever ridden right here.
Peahi Beach, Maui
Peahi Beach, the location for the filming of Point Break’s climactic surfing finish, is better known to surfers as “Jaws”, which should tell you everything you need to know. Point Break’s director, Erikson Core, says of the waves he saw there, “They were the biggest waves on record for a decade, 70-foot plus. Many of the surfers born and bred in Maui had never seen waves that high.”
Lauterbrunnen and Walenstadt, Switzerland
Surfing isn’t the only extreme sport however. For the truly daring there is also the option of dressing up like a neon flying squirrel and hurling yourself off a mountain to fly. While Lauterbrunnen has plenty of great wingsuiting spots thanks to its position at the foot of the Swiss Alps, the truly hair raising stunts happen near Walenstadt at a place known only as “the Crack”.
It’s what it sounds like – wingsuiters literally fly down into a crack in the ground and swoop about underground. Wingsuit stunt pilot Jeb Corliss says, “It’s a situation where there are no outs—meaning, you can’t just fly away and pull your parachute.”
Mont Blanc, The Italian Alps
For a slightly less airborne, yet no less terrifying challenge, the makers of Point Break film an incredible snowboarding sequence near Mont Blanc in the Italian Alps. To film this is a small group of key crew consisting of snowboarding champions and Olympic gold medalists made camp near Courmayeur, Italy and hurled themselves down the mountain at speeds between 30 and 65 miles per hour.
What each of these challenges has in common is that the athletes carrying out these stunts are working with gravity. Even the wingsuiters are heading in a generally downwards direction.
At Angel Falls in Venezuela, the tallest continuous waterfall on Earth, the athletes are heading upwards, climbing without the help of ropes or a safety net. One of the world’s preeminent rocks climbers, Chris Sharma, helped plan the climb.
“When I talked to him about what we were trying to achieve, he said the only place in the world to do it was Venezuela, so that’s where we went,” Core recounts.
Edgar Ramirez, who stars in the film as extreme sports criminal Brodhi in the film says, “Angel Falls is in a place called Canaima, which is a national park, probably one of the least explored places on Earth and one of the most beautiful.”
Of course, while it’s beautiful, it’s also dangerous.
What’s your favorite extreme sports location? Let us know in the comments.