Video Review: Mokovel Session #6 - Jonathan Perroni

Video Review: Mokovel Session #6 - Jonathan Perroni

Heming Luo |

Mokovel has put out a number of similar “MOKOVEL SESSION” videos over the course of the past year, but this one—for several reasons—stands out in particular. Jonathan Perroni is, to put it mildly, on another level. He represents a new-age transcendence of skatepark and urban-street influence, something which ultimately culminates in a substantial and wide-ranging array of tricks as well as apparent ease approaching a breadth of different obstacles. Jonathan seems effectively to be able to do any trick he wants, and on anything he wishes to perform that trick at that. It can be a bit much in select instances, but on the whole it is more so demonstrative of scootering’s greater progression in general, and a blending of the formerly discrete categories of park and street into a more-or-less seamless union.

With specific regard to tricks, one thing especially worthy of consideration was the appeal to symmetry and mirrorism throughout. This is first made apparent in the video’s opening lines: a backside 360 double down heel on flat and backside smith 360 double whip, then the inverse—frontside 360 double downside on flat and frontside smith 360 double heel. Similar mirrored progressions occur several times as the video continues, with notable instances being the double whip to manual fingerwhip (followed by double heel to manual opposite fingerwhip) and the triple whip to smith triple heel (followed by triple heel to smith triple whip). 

This aesthetic approach is, at least for myself, intuitively appealing, not just for the diversity of ability it communicates, but for the contemplative and premeditated understanding of how tricks will fit together in the video part that it represents. All too often, scooter films seem like little more than an amalgam of footage thrown together without much regard to how one trick fits with another beyond keeping in time with the soundtrack and selected b-roll shots. Such symmetrical arrangements diverge from this tendency, however, and in doing so reveal a new form of deeply interwoven visuo-spatial representation. The duality of tricks portrayed is just one-side of the coin, as with it also comes also inverted direction of approach, opposing views of the actor and even an opportunity for changes in camera orientation. Reciprocal tricks or lines are thus not mere expressions of difficulty as much as they are an encapsulation of scootering as a whole—a complete and full-circle phenomenon. It isn’t a necessity that scooter videos depict this extent of forethought, but it certainly serves them well all the same. Scooter riding is more than tricks alone, and is indeed the way that said tricks work together in concert, complementing each other to create a cohesive whole. There are many ways of achieving such fluidity, but the mirrorism of this video represents a concerted and well-sculpted effort at doing so.

Beyond the tricks themselves, I think this film is also a valid testament to how enjoyable scooter videos can be—and in virtually any context—when documented properly. Anyone who follows WISE is likely already familiar with the film work of Antoine Baldisserri, but his name deserves explicit recognition. High definition video production is largely under-matured in scootering as a whole, but individuals like Antoine are contributing to its steady progression nonetheless. Irrespective of your take on the 4:3 HD aspect ratio debate, there is no denying that this is proper lensmanship, and of the kind that scootering could stand only to benefit from should it become more widespread. Mokovel as a collective seems to be leading the charge in scootering on many fronts these days, and this video is one of the many reasons why. Give it a watch.

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