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"Bra Boys" is set in the Sydney beach side suburb of Maroubra and it focuses on the culture that Maroubra Beach has created. "Bra Boys" is a tribe they don't like to be thought of as a gang that have each others back in the financial struggle that some of the families have. The story is centered around the Abberton family, as Russ said, with the film being written and directed by famous surfer brother Sunny Abberton. Their alcoholic mother and her violent boyfriend brought up the brothers, which resulted in the brothers congregating at their Nan's house. The brothers were brought up not only as brothers but as best friends who used the beach as an escapism from their less than prefect life. The film also follows the murder of Anthony Hines and the involvement and trail of Jai and Koby Abberton. But Sunny does not only concentrate on just his own family, but how Maroubra and the "Bra Boys" came to be, as well as introducing other people important to him like his apprentice surfer. Like any surfer needs to Sonny inserts a lot of amazing surfing footage, some quite dangerous and tense, which ultimately is the most riveting part of the film. Though the film is not without its fault, you could imagine a man proud to announce he would never divulge information about his brother, couldn't write, direct and most likely produce a film that wasn't biased. The background behind the murder of Anthony Hines seems to be extremely selective, they of course never initiated any violence and they appear to almost be a very peaceful and passive surf tribe. This seems highly unlikely and I think the brother makes a movie that he would want to see. Often the cinematography, if you could call it that was a bit rough, sometimes only with half faces on camera. But it does set the mood for the rough tribe that is the bra boys. The folky surf music and often interesting interviews provide an entertaining and insightful window into the lives of these bra boys, even if it is a very blurred window. I highly recommend it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Bra Boys is a fascinating exploration of the Maroubra surf scene, or
more correctly the boys of the Maroubra surf scene (there is no room
for the female in this landscape) particularly focusing on the Abberton
Coming from hardened backgrounds and neglectful parents, the brothers rose up to form a clan of fraternal solidarity with the Maroubra local boys as well as strong reputations as world class surfers of big waves.
While the subject matter is fascinating and there's almost enough material here for 3 documentaries, the fact that the film is written, directed and produced by Sunny Abberton causes a problem. A documentary like this needs a certain objectivity which never happens.
This becomes a real problem for the film when it explores the incidents surrounding the murder of Anthony Hines and the involvement of Jai and Koby Abberton. The film avoids some very important facts here that end up frustrating its audience and also lessening its impact. It's hard to engage with a story when you can feel that you're given a highly manipulated version of the events whether that be the melodramatic horror music that accompanies any photo of Hines or the glossing over of Kai's actions and Koby's statement to the police. While the boys make reference to a certain street code of silence, this doesn't fly so well in a documentary. An objective eye could have helped ask the questions and provide the information that the film really needed to at this moment. The real story of this documentary seems to be lurking at the edges, hidden under the forced attempts to prove their reckless invincibility and unbreakable commitment to their comrades.
While it's true that the boys are often misrepresented by the media's one sided view, they're not doing themselves any favors by taking a one sided view themselves. After watching this documentary, you would almost walk away believing that the Abbertons should be praised for their actions involving Hines and single-handedly soothed the Cronulla riots.
They're keen to play up their tough home life and upbringing. Not so willing to disclose that Koby now pulls in $250,000 a year sponsorships.
Besides the Abberton grandmother who opens her home to the local boys, women are almost completely missing from this film.
And despite the tattoo that claims he is his "brother's keeper", Koby is visibly absent from his brother's trial verdict where he will discover whether he faces a 30 year imprisonment.
Although it isn't connected to the Abbertons, the drug ties to the Bra Boys probably deserved a bit more screen time rather than the disjointed opening 30 minutes of weird historical narration and bad animation. It also could have served to make more sense of the events surrounding Anthony Hines.
The Abbertons have led an amazing life and the hope they offer the local boys through the Bra Boys and their surfing achievements IS commendable and worthy of praise. But they should trust their audiences enough to let them be the judge of that rather than trying to manipulate their opinions.
Bra Boys Review.
Bra boys is an interesting one sided documentary about a group of surfers in Australia and a story into their lifestyle. Bra boys is based in Maroubra, Sydney, NSW, on the 2nd most popular beach in Australia.
The documentary is made and directed by Bra Boys, Sunny Abberton and features many gang members and pro-surfers. It shows the early life of the four Abberton brothers: Sunny, Jai, Koby and youngest brother Dakota. We see their unsuitable upbringing and lives as children and why they turned all their attention to the ocean and surfing. The Bra Boys have very little trust and respect for police officials and try to protect their gang from outsiders. We can see that the documentary is from the Bra Boys point of view as it does not shows information from anyone else besides the Bra Boys and the Bra Boys friends. Bra Boys have one main woman in their documentary and it happens to be their grandmother Mavis. Mavis took care of the brothers and most of their friends when the Abberton brother's mother, Lynn was struggling with heroin addiction and had an abusive partner who once hit Koby. At Mavis' house is where the whole gang ideas started, the first gang was called ma's hell gang.
The documentary is mostly about the brothers and what they have been through. One of the most biggest and interesting event is the murder of Anthony Hines who was shot by Jai Abberton. Jai claims he shot Hines for self defence reasons, it was said that Hines had been after Jai Abberton after he suspected him of sleeping with his girlfriend. Although we don't get very much information on this event it is still the biggest as both brothers Jai and Koby are looking at serving jail time. Jai got 20 months in prison but then was found not guilty; we still don't receive any more information on the incident with Jai saying "I have only had to tell the jury what happened that night". Another incident that happened was on 22nd of December 2002 when the Bra Boys had a party for pro-surfer Mark Mathews 21st.The party consisted of 200 drunken men who got into fights with off-duty police officers who were celebrating a Christmas party one floor below them. That night only Bra Boys were arrested and all the police who were involved got off, this actually shows that the Bra Boy's got treated differently for something they may not have started, its no wonder they distrust the police.
Most of the time the Bra Boy's are just trying to have fun. They stick to the beaches and surf but sometimes like to set their friends on fire and jump into water from cliffs. Some critics have disapproved of this but I think it's their lives they can do what they want so therefore should be left alone. We do see some fights that occur during the documentary but only the surfers against other surfers. We can determine who belongs to the Bra Boy's gang as most of them have 'Bra Boy's tattooed on them but in Koby's case he has 'My brothers keeper'.
Bra Boy's has a very Australian feel about it, this may be because the narrator is no other then Russell Crowe. The documentary also contains mostly Australian songs some by Parkway Drive which gives it a very Australian feel. We also receive some history on when the first fleet arrived in Australia and the controversy between them and the Aboriginals. I think it was a wise idea to include some history of the place where it was filmed because it could show why the Abbertons are the people they are today.
Also in the documentary it features the Cronulla Riots, and it shows how the Bra Boy's were involved. Most people thought that the Bra Boy's were probably one of the main causes but in fact they were the ones who were trying to make peace. People may have thought this because the Bra Boy's, when they first heard people were heading their way grabbed baseball bats and other weapons and went straight to the beach. They were only trying to protect their beach from getting destroyed. Bra Boy's also said that it wasn't all the Lebanese who were fighting, most of the people protecting the beach were multi cultural, Koby said some couldn't even speak English but was standing and fighting for Australia.
At the end of the film it shows people from Maroubra telling people what nationality they are, this is a way of showing that it doesn't matter if your not full Australian or born in Australia you are still apart of it. Bra Boy's must think this is important because they wouldn't have shown it otherwise.
The documentary Bra Boys is a very interesting point of view. I would watch it again and recommend it to people who are interested in surfing and the Abberton brothers. I don't think the Abberton brothers made this documentary to promote themselves or to make themselves famous, they just want to tell their side of the story. It shows their point of view and not just the media's. it is a very good film.
Internet movie database Nikila GYC
The film 'Bra Boys' begins by describing the settlement of the Maroubra
area and goes on to detail the often chaotic living situations of some
of the areas younger citizens. From then on the story follows the
journey of the Abberton brothers - Sunny, Koby and Jai - as they face
court cases, gang violence and some massive waves.
While I can appreciate the rags-to-riches story of the Abberton brothers, for me the story never really seemed to hit home. This may be because of the negative stigma that often goes hand-in-hand with the Bra Boys. However, I believe it is much more simple than that: it is a poorly directed and edited film. Too often was I distracted by the uneven sound, sub-par camera work and jumpy interview sequences.
Yet, the film really shines when it is left to people other than the Abberton brothers to describe the various incidents through their own retelling. This balances the film nicely, rather than have Koby or Jai recount their own court cases and possibly omit certain details. Another element that enhances this film is the surf footage, which really is the tie that binds all these 'Bra Boys' together.
But I found that the negatives far outweighed the positives for this film. It provides an interesting insight into one of Australia's most notoriously tight-knit surf cultures, yet the Abberton influence raises questions of bias regarding the various events which envelop his brothers. For me, this film was interesting but far from great.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Bra Boys Review
Genre Documentary Run time 85 minutes Rated M Country Australia Director Sunny Abberton Rating
Bra Boys is a documentary about a gang of middle aged men, who live to surf and stick together in a brotherhood to defend themselves and their beach in an urban community called Maroubra in East Sydney, Australia.
These men formed a little gang from a very young age to help each other get through the harsh reality of all their issues at home and also society in general. Three brothers in particular who were the original kids along with a couple of their mates, who stuck together when going to the beach and out in the street, just to survive and not get beaten up. As the boys got older, the gang became bigger. Life at home was terrible for most of these guys from a very young age, so they would hang out at the three Abberton brothers' grandma's house. This would now become home for them, they would meet at "Ma's" house when they skipped school and then would go down to the beach together and surf.
The gang eventually grew and as the boys got older, in many ways they didn't get more mature. Drinking, partying and surfing became the regular routine for the now well known 'Bra Boys' and when the surf was too small to catch waves, you can guarantee that they could find something outrages to entertain themselves with. For example there is one particular piece of video footage of one bra boy jumping off a small cliff face into the water while lit on fire. I think this is part of who they are and what they are all about, and it is good because it is different and unique as well as absolutely stupid.
This movie is mainly based around the Abberton brothers who also direct it, which does bring up the point of bias. The Bra Boys only show their side of the story which begs the question Are they telling the full story of what their life and gang are all about, or are they hiding something and trying to better their reputation? I'm sure that the police would have quite a different view of some of the events in which the Bra Boys have been involved in. The movie shows how two of the Abberton brothers have to go to court and deal with a murder that has been put on them and the process in which they deal with it, along with the passing of their Ma whom they had great respect for.
By the end of the movie the Abberton brothers show us how strong the connection is of the Bra Boy brotherhood, how they are always there for each other, and how big a part of their lives the beach is. They make something out of their lives instead of doing drugs and sitting in the background. I think that it is astonishing where a couple of the Bra Boys have got themselves to in life. The Bra Boys are very well known for being able to handle anything painful. To take off on some of those giant waves knowing that there is a coral reef right below, knowing that you are putting your own life at risk and if worst comes to worst you could die, I think that you have to have a pretty strong mindset to be able to step outside that barrier. These men display that mindset with a very positive and aggressive attitude. They will do anything, and I mean ANYTHING, to catch that perfect, giant wave. The Bra Boys are a strong cult and a big part of the Australian culture, a brotherhood that never backs down and lets other people push them around.
They live to surf and surf to live!
I thoroughly enjoyed this movie and think that it is a great insight into what the Bra Boys have achieved to have come out of the slumps and make something out of life.
BRA BOYS Genre: Documentary Run Time: 85 Minutes Rated: M Country:
Australia Director: Sunny Abberton
Bra Boys is a compelling documentary of the infamous surf gang, the Bra Boys. The story is centered around the three Abberton Brothers Jai, Sunny and Koby who joined together with other young kids going through disadvantaged upbringings. The three brothers, as well as their younger brother Dakota (who isn't mentioned in the story much) are looked after by their grandmother Ma, who becomes the boys mother, mentor and gang leader after drugs and abuse, tore apart their relationship with their mother. The Maroubra beach gangs story is a scary incite in to the Australian beach culture in the Sydney suburb which helped to form them. One full of drugs, alcohol, domestic violence, assault and rape. The director of this film, Sunny Abberton tells his side of the story on the notorious 'Bra Boys' and their story of hatred, distrust, and the love and pride they have for each other. For their 'Family' and for their 'Brothers'. The Bra Boys are amazing surfers, riding the largest, heaviest and most dangerous waves on earth and loving every minute of it. The documentary shows us mixed sides of the Bra Boys. Scenes showing their annual fun days dancing on the streets, jumping off cliffs covered in flames, on top of a very unimpressed bus drivers bus, to other scenes of brawls taking place involving guns, knives and various other weapons. The movie is mostly male dominated with the only females really mentioned being their mother Lynn who couldn't look after them due to her Heroin addiction and abusive partner, and the lady who becomes the most influential person in the boys lives, their grandmother Ma, whose house the boys hung out at and were treated with as close to a family life as some of the boys could get. Some of the boys still hang out there after over 15 years. One disappointing aspect of the story was the fact that Jai didn't use his brothers documentary as a way to tell his side of the events that happened on August 5, 2003, when he shot Tony Hines and disposed of his body over the cliff. We also didn't learn what Koby did to be facing 15 years jail. As you can imagine, the story is the Bra Boys, therefore it's their version and side of events so you can be sure that the police would completely disagree on most of the information mentioned in this documentary. However I found it quite engaging and it showed me a different side of the gang than what I expected. For example to be told that the gang was involved in the Cronulla riots as peace keepers using their multicultural backgrounds and friends to call about peace was news to me as I was under the impression they were to blame for it, and also the fact that they payed for Jess, a young talented surfer to go surfing with them. Russel Crowe narrates the story, his voice giving the impression of the tough, strong, masculine Australian men that the Bra Boys seem to be.
'Bra Boys' is a great piece of work, if a bit contradictory in parts, but then life usually is.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Bra Boys is a bias documentary about a gang of Maroubra surfers with
the focus on the Abberton brothers- Sunny, Jai, Koby and Dakota. Using
the beach as a saviour for troubled kids, Sunny, Jai and Koby tell
their story of struggle and hardship whilst growing up with a heroin
addicted mother. This left them in the care of their grandmother, which
they called Ma.
This film was made to make the bra boys look good. By putting a young member of their gang in the documentary and saying that they encouraged him to give up drugs and live for the beach, otherwise he was not allowed to be apart of their gang anymore, gives the boys a reputation that they are heroic. Saying that they used the beach as a saviour, maybe they did but it still does not account for the miss leading and left out evidence in the documentary.
An example of miss leading evidence is in the murder trial of Anthony Hines. It clearly states that Jai was found not guilty of murder but does not mention the compelling evidence against him and how he managed to get off. It also fails to mention that Koby did not get off all his chargers instead it states that his charge was dropped due to unsubstantial evidence. Failing to state anything about the other chargers, this makes the boys look like heroes to their fellow gang members and the audience watching the film.
In the absence of film on the Cronulla riots proves that the boys were somehow involved more than they said. Stating that they were just attacked out of now where is the only footage of them fighting and making the peace action between the Lebanese community. This demonstrates to the audience that they can do no wrong.
Thrown in with the preservation of the bra boys title is Australian aspects. With the narration of Russel Crowe and comparing the bra boys defending their land as the aboriginals did when white settlers came puts us on the bra boy's side to begin with. Throughout the film it gives more and more evidence and suggesting that the boys are good and when it comes to the boy's trial it creates a feeling that you want them to get off. But after analysing it you recognize that the documentary is bias and is just a way for the boys to defend and appraise themselves in the community.
This documentary directed and written by the eldest brother, Sunny shows the bra boys side of events in Maroubra and defends their status as notorious gangsters. The documentary includes their side of the Cronulla riots, the murder trial in which Jai was found not guilty of murdering fellow Bra Boy Anthony Hines and Koby's chargers of perverting the course of justice. In the documentary it states that all of Koby's chargers were dropped which in fact is not true and this cause some confusion to the out come of Koby's trial. Bra Boys is also a story of struggle and brotherhood who stick together when it counts.
Just a little ways east of Sydney lies a place called Marouba Beach,
home to the Bra Boys, a band of hooligan surfers founded by the
Abberton Brothers in the 1990s, now made famous courtesy of a
documentary entitled "Bra Boys: Blood is Thicker Than Water." When
they're not out hanging ten or catching a monster wave, the boys are
busy duking it out with rival gangs and even the local police.
The film, directed by Sunny Abberton himself, makes for reasonably interesting viewing, though one wonders whether the material itself truly merits a full-length documentary. It starts off painting the gang as a bunch of out-of-control hellions, then spends the rest of the time making the case that they are really just poor, misunderstood fellows at their core. The movie does a fairly convincing job in that respect - not surprising given the director's close personal ties to the subject - but the real stars of the film are the beautifully photographed curls the boys tackle in between bouts of anti-social behavior and revisionist self-reflection.
Bra boys is a suggestive documentary about the surfing lifestyle in
Australia. It shows aspects of the lifestyle outside of the surfing
itself, including things like drinking, violence, friendship, family,
murder and the involvement of the police and the law. It shows all of
these things and the impacts that they have had on their lives.
The documentary was directed by two members of surf gang ‘the Bra Boys’, Sonny Abberton and Macario de Souza. Because of this it shows their views on everything and their opinions of things. While this can appear to be a biased representation of events, they did direct the documentary so of course it is going to sway to being a bit biased. Because the Bra Boys are just assumed to be the bad guys by the media and police they want to defend themselves and their reputations. I think that is a fair representation and why wouldn’t they want to show themselves in a positive way.
The Bra Boys are made up of male surfers that live in or around Maroubra Beach in New South Wales, Australia. They have all come from somewhat troubled backgrounds and didn’t really have great family lives when they were growing up so they have had to turn to each other. They come from a poor suburb and are all from working class families. They are all involved with the surf culture and lifestyle and have formed a tight brotherhood. They all have a lot of similarities so this is probably why they have bonded in the way that they have.
The main people appearing in the documentary are the Abberton brothers. The Abberton brothers are Sunny, Jai, Koby and Dakota. They all share the same mother but only two of them have the same dad. Their mother was a heroin addict so she wasn’t really there to support them and so they just took care of each other throughout the years. The Abberton brothers and their friends from the area used to hang out at their Grandma, Mavis’, house. Her house was close to the beach so it was somewhere for them to hang out and from here they formed the Bra Boys.
The documentary is narrated by Russell Crowe so from the start it gives it a kind of Australian feel. A lot of this documentary is all about Australian culture and a lot of Australians could relate to it. With things like them being against the police, larrikin characters, strong manly representation of men this can be associated as part of Australian culture.
And so the documentary shows these troubled kids trying to do good for themselves and them just having fun and surfing all day. Everything is great for them until the Bra Boys have a run in with the police. It is one of the Bra Boy’s, Mark Mathews, birthday and they are celebrating with 200 of his friends at the Coogee RSL and the local police are having a Christmas party one floor above them. A fight breaks out between the two parties and 8 Bra Boys are arrested while no police officers are charged. From this event the police and the Bra Boys have clashed with the police thinking that the Bra Boys are a bunch of criminals. This part of the documentary they show the two sides of the story so it’s not really fair to say the whole film in biased.
One of the main parts of the movie is when Jai Abberton is charged with murdering Anthony Hines. Anthony Hines had been to jail before and always in trouble with the police and was a friend of Jai’s. Jai supposedly shot Anthony Hines in self-defence and dumped his body of the side of a cliff into the water. Jai’s brother Koby was also charged for lying to the police and attempting to pervert the course of justice. Firstly Koby then later Jai were released with all charges dropped. Jai spent 10 months in prison though before the trial happened.
Perhaps one of the positive things that the Bra Boys do in the film in when they apologise to the Lebanese community when the riots where happening in Cronulla, New South Wales. They are showing that they had no part in the riots and are very accepting of other cultures. I think that while this could be genuine and what they are really like it could have also just been to make themselves look better in front of the public.
I don’t think that this documentary was at all a way to promote themselves because they started filming the documentary before a lot of these events happened. I think that maybe by making this documentary there names would become more well known but I don’t think it was the sole reason for making it. Overall I enjoyed the documentary as it was enjoyable for a documentary which I don’t usually find too interesting.
Who cares if the movie is biased? Of course it is. So is every other
movie ever made. Great movie. Great story. Most movies don't have half
as many compelling actors as this movie does and it has no actors.
Where are the women? This movie looks like most bars on any night other
than Friday or Saturday. Who cares, this movie will make most men
jealous. We all wish we were part of something so strong. This movie
will probably be lucky to bring in a million dollars and it's far
better made and more entertaining than 95% of the blockbusters that
most people go to.
I need ten lines to get this on the website.
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