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Independent DVD Review: Wet-House, Telling the Story, an Ammen Jordan Film.
Steve Fisher, Nikki Kelly, Andrew Holcombe, Bryan Kirk, Tanya Shuman and Jimmy Blakeney (also friends, family, pets etc..).
The main title of this film caused a lot of initial comment in my house. "Wet-House" sounds more like an X-rated film then a kayaking film, as I was constantly informed by people who saw the case in my DVD shelf.
The secondary name on the case, "telling the story" is a more accurate guide for an initial idea of what to expect.
Take a bunch of the very best kayakers on offer, and make a film of them doing their thing? That's been done, and done. Wet-House takes things a little deeper. Each of the six featured paddlers are taken in turn to have their story told, not just by them, but by their friends and family. It really is a neat approach, and one which adds a great freshness, keeping the viewer interested. Be that person a boater or not (handy for watching when bored girlfriends are around).
This does not take away from the boating action at all. The on-river action is plentiful, and as you could expect from such top class paddlers, moves, runs and locations are all slick and impressive.
The production is super slick. Every element is where it should be to produce an enjoyable, well paced experience for the viewer. I am pretty sure this film had a comparatively large budget, giving it a good boost in the resource department, but budget alone cannot make a film. Using filmed interviews helped pad out the content, as did using stills and video sequences not done specifically for this DVD. None of these are out of place in their use, or detract from the film itself.
None of the boating action itself achieves anything radically "new", yet that isn't saying it is at all dull. I have watched it repeatedly (well naturally, I am writing a review) and it is still classy, stylish stuff, well balanced with creeking, big volume, and freestyling action. Something for everyone.
After watching endless DVD's of kayaking for kayaking's sake, it can get a bit like watching the Olympics. Athletically impressive, but after a while it gets a bit boring. It's really nice to see a (successful) attempt to make a film with a strong concept and sense of narrative. If you are in the market for a DVD, you couldn't go too far wrong with Wet-House. Just make sure you show the front cover to everyone. Anyone reading the case's spine in your DVD shelf will get the wrong idea.
P.S. comes with free sticker!!! Everything should come with free stickers.
For more information and online ordering, visit wet-house.com.