If you are not familiar with All This Mayhem then prepare yourself for an emotional rollercoaster documentary on the rise and fall of two of Australia’s best vert skateboarders. The chaotic lives of Tas and Ben Pappas are documented by tales from friends, skateboard industry associates and hand cam footage shot throughout their journey from Prahran skate park in Melbourne to California where they chose to compete with skateboarding’s elite.
This real life career suicide story is awash with everything that the early 90s offered, with amazing footage of skate sessions at Danny Way’s ramp whilst riding for Primitive/XYZ, party footage wasted on acid, mushrooms, weed and coke, that drifts into a lethal hangover of drug smuggling, cocaine, heroin and crack addiction, murder, suicide and jail terms.
The film also tackles skate industry hierarchy, political walls within the skateboard mainstream media with a stab at the comp scene in the US. This features heavily due to the nature of the Pappas brothers’ willingness to beat Tony Hawk to the number one spot and smash the system with their balls-out, punk rock attitudes and trick progression.
It’s a fast-paced movie that does not let you nod off for a minute with a car crash ender that will leave you in tears. Whether you skate or not, scout out this documentary and watch it whatever age you are. Their story is nothing short of mind blowing and if anything, should be an insight into how not to destroy your life from bloated ego’s when you have it all.
This Saturday’s screening at the BFI was attended by Tas Pappas alongside director Eddie Martin, producer George Pank and Bafta-winning editor Chris King. This footage is of the Q&A session that followed filmed on an iPhone. Thanks to everyone who put in the hours to bring such an important film to skateboarders worldwide.
Watch the trailer:
Note that Tas Pappas filmed most of his tricks in this on acid and mushrooms: