How many times can you reinvent an idea? Clearly it's 5 at the moment. In the fifth installment of the now year long Elite Series, Jonas partners up with the soul embodiment of ninjutsu, Alex Burston. Let's make sure we get something out of the way right off the bat. I saw a review that specifically used the word "grime" to describe this profile and they hit the nail on the head. The first track splashes into your ears with a sounds you can't quiet describe all over again. I wish it continued, and now I'm on a quest to hunt down that track. The use of negative space through this entire profile carries a heavy weight sharing the overall story. Heavy desaturation and dimly lit scenes played up by the absolutely outstanding camera wizardry of Jonas pull you into a grime filled underworld haunted by glitched rap and trap tones. Alex comes in hot with some long grinds and some real technical head scratchers. He'll leave you wondering what foot is natural and what one is switch.
Alex's skating at times in the past came out as cut and paste seeing the same deep farves and true top souls he's known for. It takes 5 minutes to even see a hint of his cut and paste skating as he breathes new air into his feet and lands some tricks I don't know I've seen from him before. I just want to clarify, Alex's skating is untouchable when it comes to grimy steeze and knees that bend the fabric of space. I would've gladly paid for 10 minutes of TTSs and squat farves any day of the week, but this truly elevated his skating to a level I hadn't seen before. He absolutely rinses a TTP on an out rail to drop, and shows you how to hold a grab in every grind he does. He does it all in a way that looks unconventional and out of place, but is picture perfect at the same time.
I feel like if every single piece of skating media was as thorough as the pieces that Jonas puts together, it would be hard for anyone to say skating isn't the illest self art form out there. There is absolute beauty to the work behind the lens, and even more so to the post production work put into the video. Take another peek at the mistrial line Alex hits in the parking garage. ES5 parking area? The jet flying over the buildings, hover Burston, it's just all done so subtly without needing a flashy callout as it can stand alone under its own strength. Alex's skating is only further complimented by this camera work. I can really say that his blading has never looked more on point then the moment this edit dropped. The focus, choice of speed on specific tricks, and flawless follow cam shooting look absolutely stunning in HD.
I have a personal war I fight with leaving Standard Definition behind or leaving it to skateboarders to keep trying to keep the last few vx2100's and vx1000's alive. I don't know how you can argue that what is presented by both parties in this video could look better if it was shot in SD. If you take the time and invest into the trick your subject is doing, and frame and focus it correctly, you can reach these levels of cinematography as well. SD just has a way to saving you from the flaws you create filming and masking them behind interlacing and noise. To make something on the level of Elite Series 1-5 takes patience, focus, a strong relationship between filler and videographer to understand the form thats presented, and execution of that understanding to capture it as a single clip. Repeat that a few hundred times and come up with a small profile. Do it a few hundred more and you're closer to a full length. I can only imagine the time investment each one of these has taken both at the time of shooting and behind the scenes afterwards.
Take a look back at the other Elite Series' that have been produced. Glo, Eugen, Quinny, Eisler, and now Burston. Each film stands on it's own as an absolute masterpiece of cinema. I don't know of anything else in the last 25+ years that I've seen that even comes close to the level of perfection on display in these 5 films. If you haven't picked up a copy of this video yet, or any of the older ones, that's a real shame. You are missing out on the very best skating has to offer. Alex's section only further encapsulates Jonas as the film maker to beat these days. Jonas only shows you that Alex Burston is still a creature that is evolving, perfecting, and getting better year after year. Grime out, ninja. - Travis
One last thing I'd like to include into this piece. The above screen shot really stood out to me from this entire part. There were a few moments in the video where scenes like this unfolded. There is a real lack of professionalism that seems to be missing from this world of ours. This really ran home to me about what he's all about. I had a chance to say hey and chat for a few minutes at Winterclash, and I'm truly grateful to of had the chance to do so. Alex stood out among the crowd, always smiling, enjoying his time, and never letting anything bring him down. Props to you for this. I'm sure it meant a lot to those kids, and I only hope we as a whole keep doing things like this instead of turning the other cheek.