All This Mayhem

all this mayhem

Brothers Ben and Tas Pappas were once at the top of the professional skateboarding world but fell into a pattern of drug abuse and self-destruction.

Year: 2014
Certificate: 15
Director: Eddie Martin
Starring: Tas Pappas, Ben Pappas

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“There’s three sides to every story, my side, your side and the truth” is the opening line to this tell-all documentary about what happened to two of Australia’s biggest skating talents. It pays to bear that in mind as you watch “All This Mayhem” as it is a very one sided, and in some respects controversial, account by older brother Tas Pappas.

Brothers Tas and Ben Pappas were just two young boys from the wrong side of Melbourne, Australia when they discovered a love of vert skateboarding at Melbourne’s Prahran Skate park. Little did they know that this love and their raw talent would maybe one day enable them to escape the rough life at home. Their home life is described at one point when Tas recalls: “Mum was hardcore, she would smash Dad on the head with a large ashtray and it was like ‘Dad’s dead’. Those are the sort of things we saw growing up.”

With archive footage going back 20 years “All This Mayhem” shows a lot of skateboarding tricks as the backdrop to Tas Pappas’ amazing interview which was four years in the making. Tas is an excellent interviewee mixing Aussie humour with the lined looks only a ‘face well lived’ can give.

When the brothers join the pro-skating circuit in the US fame, fortune and “New friends in every town” lead them to crash and burn in a drug-fuelled celebrity style. Becoming world champions and beating Tony Hawk within a year leads to a career-long feud between Tony and the brothers, about which one of the films contributors says “Tas would thoroughly burn down bridges and spit in your face”. However Tas is not the real problem brother and what happens to Ben is a hauntingly tragic story. Which, as we don’t do spoilers, I won’t go into here.

“All This Mayhem” is the brilliant story of what happens when raw talent, youth and extreme personalities collide. It just happens to be about two brothers in the world of skateboarding – it is well worth watching even if you don’t like the sport.

Have you seen this film? Let us know your opinions in the comments below and of course if there are any films on Netflix UK you want us to review let us know!

About Tammy

A parent blogger and mom to 3 adorable children, who likes watching documentaries and dramas.

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