Skaterdater: Fantastic 1965 skateboarding movie

[Updated 24 Sept. 2009]

I was floored by Skaterdater when I saw it in about 1970 as a short before a feature film (possibly the Beatles’ Let It Be). I never even knew the title of it until just this evening when it suddenly flashed in my mind and I did one of those shot-in-the-dark Google searches like “old skateboard movie.”

The movie has no dialogue, just a beach-music soundtrack. It’s a coming-of-age movie about a California skateboard gang. One member disgraces himself by taking up with a (gasp!) girl. The movie ends with a skateboard duel between the traitor and his former buddy. The two face off doing slaloms down a steep hill.

Wikipedia has an article on Skaterdater here.

I almost hate to link to this low-res version of Skaterdater on Google Video — it might be posted without permission. Sadly, however, the movie does not appear to be available commercially (otherwise I would buy copies for children, grandchildren, and some kids I know!)

[Update 24 Sept. 2009:] Since I posted the Skaterdater entry, I have heard from Bill McKaig, one of the cast from the film — see his comment below.

My friend Paul Girolamo (with whom I originally saw the movie, although sadly he doesn’t remember that) is a video professional — after watching the movie recently, he commented:

I took a film class once where the perfect film was defined as a story told with pictures and no dialogue or captions. I think Skater Dater is pretty close to the ideal. What a gem.

It’s pretty sophisticated technically too. Those close-ups following the feet on the board would be tricky today. In 1965 the camera team really had to know what they were doing.

AB — 2 April 2009

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6 thoughts on “Skaterdater: Fantastic 1965 skateboarding movie

  1. kevin blakely

    Wondering how to get in touch with Bill McKaig. Curious as to what happened with the cast over the years.

    I clearly remember seeing this film when I was young. It was the lead in to some other movie, the name and content of which I’ve long since forgotten. I’ll always remember “Skater Dater” though, burned into my adolescent mind and still with me 40 years later.

    I recently dragged my wife and kids from the Midwest to Malaga Cove Plaza to see the fountain. They could have cared less, but it sure meant something to me.

    Thanks for a lifetime of memories.

  2. Bill McKaig

    Kevin Blakely, we all stay friends through high school and then went our different ways. Of course I see my brother Bruce who still lives in the Hollywood Rivera section about a block from me. Gregg Carroll I run into at work in El Segundo, he lives down south (Mission Viego?) and heads to San O ever chance he gets. Mike Mel lives in Irvine, but I don’t know what he does. Rick Anderson still lives in the South Bay, but I haven’t ran into him in a long time. Gary Hill is a “famous” vido artist and lives in Seattle. Of the 3 girls in the film, Molly, the dark haired one died about 4 years ago. The other two I have no idea.

  3. bob s

    Bill, thank you for the update on the guys. I love the movie and reminds me of my youth in the late 60’s skate boarding with my friends and just hanging out.

    who is who in the movie?

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