What it takes to make a champ: Carissa Moore in ‘Riss’

Redbull’s new Carissa Moore signature movie “Riss” dropped today and it offers a unique insight into the champ and how the non-surfing world sees women’s surfing…

Written, directed and edited by “Let’s be Frank” creator Peter Hamblin and narrated by non-surfer Kaitlin Magowan, the movie has some incredible surfing and offers a rare glimpse into the world of Carissa Moore.

The disjointed editing we see at the start continues through the 40 minute feature and seems to be a signature of Hambin’s work. It is, at times, quite off-putting and detracts from the film more than it adds to it.

It’s the voiceover though that really makes this movie hard to watch. With the take-home of the film centred around Carissa’s three core concepts of dream, be authentic and love, the negativity and dismissiveness of the voiceover seems to contradict not only what Carissa is saying but also be at odds with her personality. Phrases like, “If you don’t know, that’s on you. Get out from under a rock” and, “for those that don’t know (and that’s a shitload of you)…” are unnecessarily negative and inauthentic.

I think Pat O’Connell’s segment sums it up best where he reads from a script and says, “Pat shrugs at camera and says, ‘makes for some decent entertainment.'” If feels like the film is trying to make decent entertainment but tries too hard and ends up missing the mark.

I love that Red Bull (and Carissa’s other sponsors) have made this film and I love that they’re promoting her as an athlete and a human rather than a model or sex symbol. I love her story and drive and I want to love this film too but I just can’t.