Bones Brigade: An Autobiography

Bones Brigade: An Autobiography (Stacy Peralta, 2012)
When six teenage boys came together as a skateboarding team in the 1980s, they reinvented not only their chosen sport but themselves too - as they evolved from insecure outsiders to the most influential athletes in the field.

Directed by Stacy Peralta, and assembled by him, this brigade of young and talented skaters proved to be game changers in the subculture that is skateboarding. This film is presented as a piece of recent History told and narrated by all the members of the group. This is the follow up to his Dogtown and Z-Boys documentary about the first team of skaters that took the sport to another level of performance. Peralta was himself a Zephyr boy and when the team was dissolved because of egos and disputes Peralta wanted to create his own team of no-names and form them to become his dream. With his abilities of coaching and George Powell’s marketing flair they created the skateboard company Powell Peralta. During the 1980’s it was the most progressive team of each discipline that the sport was displaying. Having a very young Tony Hawk, Steve Caballero, Mike McGill, and Lance Mountain as vert skaters (vertical ramp and empty swimming pool skating), Rodney Mullen as the boy wonder of freestyle, and Tommy Guerrero the first street skater of the team.

The story is centered on those boys, but also tells how the sport practically died and was reborn in the 1980’s. In the same vein it is also represented as the cure or the thing that those ordinary and modest young men had to help them pass through their teenage years and become men. It was their passion and the fun they had while doing the sport influence and leaded millions of kids to grab a board and go skate whatever the find out there.

The documentary is shot with more mastery than Peralta’s previous efforts and it is quite clear that he was eager and proud to tell this piece of History. Even for the non-skaters it is a very enjoyable film that tells where most of the legends and cultural pop icons like Tony Hawk come from.

Finally, it is obvious that as a skater myself and an Historian I was gonna love this documentary but I didn’t expected to be served as much as the emotions and the heart whelming moments that those guys are delivering on the screen. We feel that they owe a lot to this period of their lives and that they cherished those great memories. I would highly recommend Bones Brigade.


  1. Growing up, I was a Christian Hosoi fan, but all these names bring back some cool memories. Must find this doc.

    1. Hosoi is featured in this doc. He still is a master of vert. In fact, I started skating vert and polls like three to four years ago and I was skating street since I was fifteen back in 1997-98.
      I'm sure you'll enjoy seing the old footage of those great gamechangers.

    2. Excellent. Now I really have to source this out.


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