|Produced by Ells Watson.
Gervais Rousseau: Quand on regarde l'ensemble des videos, on peut se dire que globalement, elles se ressemblent toutes. Exception faite des videos Ells Bells. Style unique, contenu unique et musique unique.
|Go march 1991 review: Coaster brakes, high bars, rotors, low seats and the kind of flatland riding that carries onward the Chris Day "flow and connect whatever you can on the spot" style makes up meat of Dope Ammo, but that's not all. Aside from the inventive ground schralping of Greg Higgins, Leif Valin, Roll from Vegas and producer Ells Watson, there's reckless street abandon by "Gonz" and Lungmustard, an interview with Perry Mervar, and comedy pieces throughout ("Skate Freak", "Kevin's Ulcer", and a hilarious intermission titled 'The Hustler"). Crude, lewd and sometimes obnoxious ... but subliminally brilliant Good graphics. Soundtrack: Thrash, metal, rap, Morrissey, and live footage of Fugazi. Bonus: Interview with Ian MacKaye.|
|DOPE AMMO II|
|Released in 1992.
BMX Plus! august 1992: Ells Watson, master of visual entertainment, has now completed a trilogy of short films featuring the best riders in freestyle. His latest creation, D.Ammo III, is packed with over one hour of hardcore riding, cool music and interesting buzz clips of random weirdness. Ells traveled to the edges of the U.S.A. to capture all these exciting moments on film. Starring riders include Jones, Brandt, Puente, Gouin, Hoffman, Augustin, McCoy, and so on.
|665 1/2 NOT QUITE EVIL|
Released in january 1992.
Ride BMX US october 1992: While the camera work leaves a little to be desired, this video is chock full of clever video samples, modern flatland tricks, and twisted humor. Highlights include a dope Little House on the Prarie re-enactment, gratuitous sex, and the fastest spinning we ve ever seen. This video is basically for those who just can't get enough Flatland.
Invert: This is Ells Watson's latest video from his Ells Bells video company, and he’s known for making crazy videos. First off, the video starts with a warning about the content - take note - and then breaks into a b/w intro featuring fantasies on nudity [yes, nudity], and a cool Little House On The Prairie bit. Then the riding starts:
Chase Gouin does a zillion whiplashes, and Kevin Jones does backwards hitchikers !More Hoods stuff follows, then flatland at the Texas BS contest, then Jazzy Geoff Martin spins manically, Pete Augustin rides ditches like a MAN, and a guy named Andrew Aroyo rides flatland very controlled indeed and soooo slowly - everything he does is like it's on slowmo the whole time, and it's real impressive.
Ells Bells gets a section himself - he rides flat real well. Next there's footage from a jump heaven, and a fresh Kevin Jones section (crazy ground). Chase Gouin pulls off a triple fire hydrant to triple decade (think), and also a quadruple decade. Leif Valin rides a ditch somewhere and does a tyretap to backside boneless.
Then there's stuff from Reading Skatepark with the Hoods, Gabe Webb does some really good whlplash variations, Pete Brandt rides ground, and then there's some killer filming from the Arizona contest we featured in Invert last month - just check Miron's backflips on mini ramp ! The action moves back to Texas BS contest with vert and mini ramp [all the stunts here], and then a section with Gonz, a sketchy but rad dirt/street rider: he does wall ride to fakie, wall ride to 360, wall ride to barspin, and wall ride to tailwhip out.
Jesse Puente then gets a section to himself - he is so rad.
The riding is interspersed with weird funky stuff from people such as Ed Roman, Karl Rothe, Mad Dog, and even the lead vocal girl from the Sugarcubes - after a couple viewings this stuff does become a bit tedious though.
Finally, the video finishes off with the best footage from Arizona BS contest, with Matt's forward flips, DMC's barspin 540, Miron's backflips, and more insane riding.
OK, 665.1/2 features some really killer riding on all sorts of terrain, but if you hate flatland then don't get this video, cause there's quite a lot of it. On the whole, 665 1/2 is a killer. We like [as for the weird stuff, take it on face value - you've got to understand the phrase tongue in cheek]. £15 from the usual on-the-ball bike shops, and it's over an hour long. We definitely rate this one.
|RING THE GACK|
Released in 1994.
There's a five minutes softcore lesbian scene at the begenning of this video with pretty ugly girls kissing and touching.
Black and white video.
If you like watching flatland, fast forward to see Chase, Chris Young, Chad Degroot, Trevor Meyer, Jesse Puente, Paul Osicka, Richard Zabzdyr, and Steve Roy. Or witness other types of heterosexual riding from Dave Freimuth, Mike rooftop Escamilla, Dave Parrick and Krt Schmidt.
Of course it contains mandatory comp footage, Rampage, Moreno Valley and Chicago.
Available november 15th, 1994.
Limited edition: 200 copies.
Ride BMX UK february 1995: Not for the faint hearted and made by Ells, DED is a video all about one bloke, something wich has never been done before. DED is all about arguably the finest flatlander in the world. Chase Paul Gouin. As you would expect from Ells, the video is totally well made with some good tweaks to the editing machineto spark it up above other vids. And as you would expect from Chase, there's some completely unbelievable flatland riding on here. There are some long sections interspersed with interviews bits with Chase, odd moments, and CPG getting it on with the good times. If you are a flatlander, you will love this video.
Best part: There is one section where Chase is linking some incredibly hard stuff together, flowing and switching flawlessly through a whole pile of tricks, and then you suddenly realise that Chase has no brakes on his bike whatsoever.
|RELEASE THE GREASE|
|Available july 15, 1995.
Plenty of flatland, Colin Winkleman's close double flip attempt, ...
Ride BMX US october november 1995: Its safe to say that Ells Watson puts more thought into making his videos than anyone else in freestyle. While most people cut and edit to show the tricks, Ells goes beyond with endless thought provoking effects in every shot. Double images, voice samples, subliminals, etc., etc... more special effects than imaginable. Montage can be applied here. Between the suicidal intro, bondage, and girls with beans spilled on their stomachs you'll find the riding of Degroot, Osicka, Chris Young, Trevor Meyer, Freimuth, Phil Dolan, Miron, Sandy Carson, Sean Peters, Gabe Weed, Krt Schmidt, Nate Hanson, Leif Valin, Brian Vowel, Gonz, the Flatland Fugitives, and many other nameless riders. Flatland riding is the foundation of this film, but there are some street, ramp, and dirt scenes too. To even begin to grasp Ralease the Grease, you'll have to watch it several times. You'll also want to press pause a lot. One thing's for sure, you'll have to see it for yourself to understand.
KalaYasuda, www.youtube.com, december 2010: Ells Bells Release the Grease 10- Chad DeGroot.
KalaYasuda, www.youtube.com, june 2012: Ells Bells Release the Grease (complete). The lovechild of Ells DeGroot and Chad Watson. A timeless work of art. Some adult content (Ells & Degruit made this; would you be surprised?)
|Starring Chase Gouin, Mark Gonzales, and Paul Osicka.
Running time: 30 min
Chase Gouin is seen doing amazing flatland stuff with different brake setups (front & back, just front, and brakeless). A million whiplash variations. Whiplashes switching his feet on the pedals, megaspins to decade brakeless, ..
Gonz suicide bunnyhops over shopping trolleys, backflip fakie tree ride, double barspin out of a wallride, ...
On voit moins Paul Osicka que les deux précédents mais son riding en flat et en street est excellent.
Chris Halverson, www.theflatlander.com: Dear lord...Umm, I don't exactly know where to begin. I suppose I could use hundreds of words to describe Glote, but I think one will work. Interesting is the first word that comes to mind. Glote's riding consists of only three riders: Chase G, Paul Osicka and the Gonz. Ahhh, what a great line up. OK, with Chase, well, he's pretty good. He does the hardest tricks in the world, no matter what anyone says. Whiplashes switching his feet on the pedals, frame, and the rear pegs? No problem. Megaspins to decade, dope. Oh, I almost forgot one minor detail, he rides with no back brake. Sometimes no brakes at all, front or rear. Impressive. Paul Osicka is another rider that will baffle me until the day I die. His riding is so smooth and slow I wonder how he stays up. At times he's not moving, just balancing carelessly on one wheel. Wow.
Now the Gonz, this man is a whole different story. He is the type of rider that makes you feel ashamed of your own riding skills. If you learn a wallride, he can double barspin out of it. And anything else you can do, he'll do it ten times better. After you get this video you'll know what I'm talking about. Enjoy.
Ride BMX US june 1997: Some films are meant to be experienced more than they are to be watched. Movies like Pink Floyd: The Wall and Easy Rider. Movies that recommend an "elevated state of mind to truly experience the trip" or whatever... Glote follows along those lines. Glote features the riding of Paul Osicka, Chase, and the Gonz. If you were going to do "a film experience" based on only three riders, those three are pretty good selection. The riding in this video is completely amazing, and the soundtrack has to be heard in stereo to truly be believed (ambient sounds and tribal drumming). So, if you're looking for a video to watch by yourself in a dark room with the sole purpose of blowing your mind, this video is your trip. Definitely not one to watch with a bunch of people on a sunny afternoon, but that's part of what makes Glote Glote. If this kind of thing sounds like your deal, then this video is definitely the one for you...
Ride BMX UK june 1997: Ells Bells makes some damn fine videos - you get awesome riding [of course], combined with extra detail and more visual and sound effects than most bike videos. Basically, Ells puts more into his videos then most video makers he even puts some of his own ambient music on there. Glote is the latest, and it features only three riders: while this would normally be limiting, when you're filming Gonz, Chase Gouin and Paul Osika you are guaranted cutting edge riding and all the style you need. In this respect, Glote rules. Gonz is a balls out street rider who can barspin anything - and we mean anything - and also does suicide bunnyhops over shopping trolleys... stunning. Try that next time you go riding. Paul Osika now possesses just plain stupid amounts of control over his bike - does he live on that thing or what? - with just incredible flatland tricks and sick front wheel manuals on street. And of course, Chase Gouin. No back brake, but who cares, he can still decade out of most stuff! He still rules flatland - Chase has the hardest ground tricks and nobody's arguing. It's all on here, and unlike some flatland-biased videos Glote does not get boring at all. Glote's got style - interesting music [not traditional BMX video stuff], killer filming, and odd bits to keep it flowing, No question - if you want to be blown away by the latest flatland and street skills on a raging video tape, then get Glote.
Zak Sprinkle: bunny up tailwhip sur 7 marches.
|ON THE DOWN LOW|
|Street only video featuring the Gonz and the rest of the Phoenix crew.
Released in 1998
Ratboy feeble to 180 full barspin
Zach Warren up five stairs handrail to full barspin
Chris Toth went for a rail that was about 18' off the ground. He didn't get on the railright, flipped over, and dropped all the way to the ground. Ells and The Gonz both thought Toth was dead, but he got away with a fractured back and a broken wrist. Chris thought the footage of the crash was pretty good, so he sent it to a tv show called Real TV and got $1,500 to help pay for some medical bills. They said in the show that some kids were trying some stupid stunts and they were making an example of this crash.
Ol'School , www.notfreestylin.com: Ells videos are not watched they are experienced. His videos affect you.. or maybe infect you, and On the Down Low is no different. I have been waiting for an all street video to hit. Sometimes you get sick of seeing the same parks that you will never make it to. Street is a common denominator. On the Down Low is the definitive video for street. If you look up "street" in the dictionary, it will say "see On the Down Low" and that is what you should do. Much has been said of this already, and more will be said. The first 20 minutes is all commercials. Normally that wouldn't be a cool thing, but the riding and the concepts of the commercials make it worthwhile. In between some of the commercials is Chase G taking boundaries of flatland a little further. This video does have some kind of plot with the Gonz acting. If there were an Oscar in BMX video acting, Monkey Boy shouldn't have to write an acceptance speech. THE street video, get one now.
Mark Losey, Ride BMX US december 1998 january 1999: This is the craziset street video I've ever seen. Ells and the Gonz put On The Down Low together and it's unreal. The music is some sort of ambient noise and that, combined with the sickest street riding ever puts you in a trance for about an hour. There is some good Chase flatland footage in the beginning during the commercials, but once the actual video kicks in, get ready. Even if you're not a street rider, you should still get On Down Low just for the entertainment value.
|Released in 1999
Co-edited by P.P. Milligan.
Like "On The Down Low", all the adverts are put at the start of the vid in between some weird interviews with the like of riders such as the Gonz, Smoker daves and Chris Toth. It is then seperated into rider sections.
Riders: Dylan Worsley (Backwards hang five step through to backward halfpacker), Michael Steingraber rides brakeless with so much control, in his totaly effortless style, Amos Burke, Gonz, Rick Moliterno, Rat Boy (John Wrigley)'s part is the shit, all kind of barspin, 180 and half-cab tricks, Brendon Watson.
Lee Musselwhite, server.byke.org/ukflat: This is ells bells second issue of the hoice video magazine series, like all Ells vids it is a bit strange to say the least. For a start there is pretty much no sound track to the vid, just strange eerie little tunes. lilke on the down low all the adverts are put at the start of the vid in between some weird interviews with the like of riders such as the Gonz ,smoker daves and Chris Toth. After this the vid kicks in to the action. It is seperated into rider sections the flatlanders on the vid include Michael Steingrabber, Dylon Worsly and Amos Burke. The rest of the vid is filled up with loads of crazy street riders bustin enormous rails and dropin crazy drops. Michel has an Auesome section, he Rides brakeless with so much control, in his totaly effortless style. Loads off cool pivot stuff,. Tons of back end passarounds in lardyard and cabose and a full step-through in halfpacker scuff to halfpacker scuff again, that just has to be seen. Dylon riding his New infinty frame totaly goes off Backwards hang five step through to backward half packer. Backward switch handed steam roller step through to backward halfpacker to backpacker pivot out xfoot hitchicker, bunny hop half barflip to crackpacker from steam roler and a swfoot steamroler to xfooted hitchicker brought down on the opside then whiplashed around to another full xhitchicker (like a xfoot hitchicker juggler but without holding the seat in the middle). Amos doesn't really do much flat in the vid just a few little clips , swfoot blender twisted round the frame to backward swfoot opside steamroler then pivoted round to the frame (al edgar plecincia) swfoot peg weelie holding the bar and the peg pivoted to rope-a-ronie to upside down mega-spin to swfoot caboose on the left foot then back round to upside down mega-spin to op side swfoot caboose on the right foot. All in all the flat on the vid is real good, but I think the vid is aimed more towards street riders. Ells really needs to sort the tunes out though, every one who I have spoke to thinks the vid would be a whole lot better if some decent music was put to the riders sections. I think part of being a good video maker involves putting the right music in the right places not just good editing. There is definitely some awesome riding there though no doubt about that. (really depends if your as fu@ked up as ells -Ed)
Michael Steingraber part.
Dylan Worsley part.
|Released in 2001.
From Ells, this is a "best of" video with highlights from all his groundbreaking videos. Witness the progression of Arizona's finest, like Mark Gonzales, Ratboy, Smoker Dave and many more.
Mark Losey, Ride BMX US february 2002: 1/2 /5
By Ells Bells Inceptions "Rebirth" s somewhat of a "greatest hits" from older Ells Bells videos, but there's a lot of new stuff mixed in. It's all street and concentrates on the Phoenix crew.
To me, the best thing about "Rebirth » is seeing the stuff Gonz has been doing for years. The guy may be a fruitcake, but he's pushed street riding for over a decade. Wallrides- to-barspins, fiip-fakie tree-rides, grinding up rails to barspins... Whether you're down with the freaks in the desert or not, you have to give Gonz respect for helping getting street where it is today. Other good stuff includes John "Ratboy/Rattitude" Wrigley and Edwin Delarosa's tech lines, and watching Chris Toth huck himself off of everything he can find. Toth's back-breaking rail is in there, too, for any masochists reading this.
If you like catchy music, the soundtrack to this video is going to kill you. There are a few regular songs mixed in, but there's also some ambient noise that put me in a trance. The video has a lot of commercials in the beginning that range from funny to boring to straight up trippy (although the Solid commercial is definitely a keeper).
THE BOTTOM LINE
"Rebirth" has a lot of innovative tricks being thrown down, both past and present. Streeters will probably like a lot of the riding (it's all street), but watching it all in one viewing is a bit much.
|Released in 2002.
Finding Shade is a year's worth of roadtrips and Sombra street madness. Rat Boy, Gonz, Frazer, DeLa Rosa, Stewart and others asault the streets of Texas, Florida, Colorado, Arizona, California and New York. (approx 43 min.)
Riders: John ratboy Wrigley, Edwin Delarosa, Rick Moliterno, Smoker Dave, Mark Gonzales, Jeff Stewart, Brendon Watson, Jeff Zielinski, Will Bissell, Chris Snyder, Thomas Hancock, Scotty Frazer, Andrew Arroyo, Yellow, Felipe Torres, Matt Berringer, Josh Stricker, Sean Parker, Joe "Butcher" Kowalski.
Tim Bor, www.bmxreview.com: This video concentrates mostly on street. Features Ratboy, Mark "da Gonz" Gonzales, Frazer, Delarosa, Stewart and others. Riding the streets of Texas, Florida, Colorado, Arizona, California and New York, they destroy many rails, manual ledges, cool gaps and stairs. High standards. King in lip tricks is of-course Ratboy, who totally dominates Casa Grande park in this vid. It's totally unbelievable what this guy can do without brakes. Without a doubt one of my favorite riders! Sombra means shade, and Finding Shade means to say that this is one hot video! Try not to burn your eyes watching, hehe!
Ells Bells uses special sound effects, instead of music. Some people can't stand it, but I think it's cool and definitely belongs to this unique piece of film.
If you're into street and unique filming, this is your kind of video. Cool street and some park, a few humorous bits in it, but not too much b/s. This one is definitely worth it's money!
micheaux, www.bmx-test.com, 08-2003:
Riders: Ratboy, Gonz, Edwin DeLaRosa, Smoker Dave, Rick Moliterno, and Jeff Stewart along with a bunch of other people with 1 trick parts.
Genre: Street, Park, and Flatland.
Spots: NY, Florida, Nevada, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, and California.
Running Time: About 43 minutes.
The video follows Ratboy and Gonz on sort of a road trip though parts of America. From looking at the cast you probably already know that the riding is really tech. A lot of 180s, 360s, truck drivers, bus drivers, wall rides, manuals, backwards wheelies, and fakies linked together as well as a lot grinds on shallow angle rails and ledges (Ratboy does a lot of rocket grind variations). There are a couple of really young kids (like 9 year olds) who do wall rides and 360s which is cool. Gonz and Ratboy have a really polished style that's fun to watch; especially when they 360 down a set of stairs.
The only bad things about the video are:
-A few scenes are shot in poor lighting which makes it hard to see what goes down.
-The music is kind of strange; bands like Magnet Plan, Tribes of Neurot, and Exorcist take a while to get used to.
-Commercials are laced throughout the video; I know the ads help pay for the video but they are really annoying.
Basically if you're into really technical street riding like Ratboy's or Gonz's style then check this video out.