Plot: Zack (Trevor Lissauer) has just arrived in a new town, as his father Frank (Timothy Busfield) was offered the position of manager at Mill Creek’s television station, a job offer that prompted him to pick up and move. Zack isn’t thrilled with the move, as he already misses his friends and no sooner does he pull into Mill Creek than he is on the radar of the Mags, the town bad boys. These kids skateboard, pull pranks, and cause all kinds of mischief, including Frank’s introduction to his new town when one of the Mags pretends he was run over. As he feels isolated and alone after the move, Zack struggles to make friends and fit in, but then he meets a new buddy that changes all that, a cool dude named Rip. Now Rip also happens to be a talking, flying skateboard, but Zack knows such a bad ass deck will make him the town’s new cool kid. But even with Rip’s help, can he learn to love Mill Creek?
Entertainment Value: If you tell me about a movie where Dom DeLuise is the voice of a talking skateboard, I’m in. Point blank. The Skateboard Kid delivers on that wonderful premise, but has more to offer, especially if you like the 90s or oddball, corny family friendly cinema. The narrative is rooted in your usual “new kid in town” routine, but the 90s vibes, skateboarding focus, and of course, outlandish flying skateboard thread ensure it has a fresh texture. I mean, sure we have seen this basic premise before, but this is just ridiculous and pure cheese at times, so I don’t think it feels rehashed or been there, done that. I know most viewers will think this is a bad movie or flat out trash and I can understand that, but for those who appreciate over the top cheese, The Skateboard Kid is a fun ride. The 90s vibes just drip off the flick, from the clothes to the hilarious dialogue to the hokey music, with the latter providing humorous lyrics at times that might get stuck in your brain. The tone is light and family friendly, which makes things even cheesier than they should be, since it tries to deliver positive messages and a talking skateboard at the same time. The Skateboard Kid might be a bad movie, but it is also a lot of fun and has some ludicrous moments.
The cast here is right in line with what you’d expect from a 90s, direct to video family family friendly comedy, which means corny, but hilarious and often over the top performances. Dom DeLuise as a talking skateboard is the wildest role, but he seems to put little energy into the part and doesn’t embrace the potential. He could have dialed up his comic presence to the moon and really brought Rip to life, but instead he sounds like he is reading a phone book, little to no enthusiasm. But that in itself is kind of humorous, as his total lack of effort is laughable as well. Timothy Busfield is fun as the typical dad in these movies, good intentions, but rather oblivious. But he runs with the unhip dad angle well and adds some laughs. I appreciate that he put some effort into his performance and that comes through, in what could have been a sleepwalk style turn, as DeLuise was content to do. The cast also includes Cliff De Young, Bess Armstrong, Shanelle Gray, and Trevor Lissauer.