Lords of Dogtown

Lords of Dogtown

Catherine Hardwicke (2005)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Stacy Peralta, who directed the documentary Dogtown and Z-Boys (2001) that charted the rise of three young skateboarders in California in the early 1970s, provides the script for this dramatisation of the same events. It's a quick-moving, good-looking movie and its strengths are very much thanks to Thirteen director Catherine Hardwicke, who utilises kinetic hand-held camerawork and rhythmic editing to give the film an intense immediacy. The weaknesses are all down to the script: the young heroes tread a well-worn path of tough childhoods, inspiring early successes and eventual heartache and betrayal, while trading dialogue such as "So, you're like really famous now, huh?" However, the positives include the charismatic leads (with Heath Ledger delivering a broad and entertaining turn as skateboarding svengali Skip Engblom) and an outstanding soundtrack, as in the original documentary.


Surfers swap the waves off Venice Beach for the slopes of empty swimming pools, where their daring stunts and tricks soon earn them celebrity status and bring skateboarding into the mainstream during the 1970s. Fact-based drama inspired by the documentary Dogtown and Z-Boys, starring Heath Ledger, John Robinson and Emile Hirsch.

Cast & Crew

Jay Adams Emile Hirsch
Tony Alva Victor Rasuk
Stacy Peralta John Robinson (3)
Sid Michael Angarano
Kathy Alva Nikki Reed
Skip Engblom Heath Ledger
Philaine Rebecca De Mornay
Topper Banks Johnny Knoxville
Party guest Jay Adams
Oregon man at party Tony Alva
Nudie Charles Napier
TV director Stacy Peralta
Punky photographer Bai Ling
Tranny Alexis Arquette
Director Catherine Hardwicke
see more

Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Sony Pictures ReleasingGuidance: Contains some violence, swearing and drug abuse. Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 16 Sep 2005