Though skateboarding first took off as a counterculture sport in California, it was never so antiestablishment as it was in repressive East Germany, where, in the ’80s, boards had to be smuggled through the checkpoint, and skaters were watched suspiciously by the Stasi. Filmmaker
Marten Persiel’s new documentary,
This Ain’t California, an award winner at the Berlinale, reunites a band of East German skaters, combining their memories of those defiant days with Super-8 footage, photos, animation, and ’80s German punk for a wild ride behind the Iron Curtain. Tonight, at Rooftop Films, Persiel will be on hand for a Q&A following the film. After-party is at R Bar (218 Bowery) with free drinks from Radeberger Pilsner.
Fri., June 1, 8 p.m., 2012