MAIDENTRIP: THE REVIEW

MAIDENTRIP is part of the ANTENNA DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL. Antenna Documentary Festival is back for another year with a program bigger and better than ever. The festival was a huge success in 2012 with over 5000 people attending. Now in its third year the annual festival will take place in Sydney from 2nd to 7th October, it screens at the CHAUVEL, THE ART GALLERY and BERKELOUW BOOKS. You can get all the information you need from HERE and now enjoy our review of MAIDENTRIP kindly reviewed by your gracious host, Me (Jason King).

 

Jillian Schlesinger, Emily McAllister, Laura Dekker, Solo Sailing, Round the world sailing, Maidentrip, Maidentrip Movie, Maidentrip review, Antenna Documentary Festival, sailing, jason king
MAIDENTRIP – THE REVIEW FOR THE ANTENNA DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL

 

I love everything about water and adventure and am inspired by people who go all the way, who do things just because they can and are born to inspire the world to be more than what we are. I remember when Kay Cottee was the first woman to sail solo around the world, I went to a talk she did when I was 16 and bought her book and she signed it and I read it a few times, I then read every book about inspirational sailors, sailing races, the pioneers of sailing, I then followed everything that Jesse Martin and Lionheart accomplished at 17 in their sailing around the world solo. Then Jessica Watson did it at 17yrs old and became the youngest, although it did not meet standards and had to be “unofficial”.

And here comes a spoiled brat from the Netherlands who wants to do it at age 13. Appalled by her parents’ decision to allow her to sail, Dutch courts placed Laura Dekker under state guardianship, grounding her for ten months. But at 14yrs old they beat the courts and she was allowed to set off and set off she did, to become the youngest person to sail solo around the world.

Laura decided to do it differently, and easier, she wasn’t doing it for records, she was doing it for sailing, her trip was not going to be unassisted, she stopped where the hell she wanted and she stayed and did touristy things and then moved on. She planned to do it over two years. It was less of a challenge but more about seeing the world and challenging herself to be alone for stretches. I really liked this part of the film as she got to meet some interesting people and do some great things, but her goal was set, she just loved being on the water.

 

Jillian Schlesinger, Emily McAllister, Laura Dekker, Solo Sailing, Round the world sailing, Maidentrip, Maidentrip Movie, Maidentrip review, Antenna Documentary Festival, sailing, jason king
MAIDENTRIP – THE REVIEW FOR THE ANTENNA DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL

 

At first, I thought I was not going to like this, Laura does most of her own filming on the boat, and for most of the film they are teenage selfies pulling faces at a camera and being a cute 14-16yr old girl desperate for attention, I loathed it. There were way too many selfies. I then realised what else could she do – she had a very tiny camera and also what looked like a GoPro or two set up on the boat.

The film then slowly progressed and she said something “Nobody said sailing was fun, except me” – and I was like what the hell is she on about, most people would say or think that. It was then it hit me – this is a 14yr old girl, spoiled to the core and completely naive and full of thoughts that she is invincible. At this time I also realised I had no idea how experienced this girl was and was completely siding with the Dutch courts. But then at 20mins in they show you the experience at sailing she has had. 1) She was born on a boat and 2) then spent the first 5yrs of her life sailing around the world, 3) this was her third boat and the girl could sail.

At times Laura seems years beyond her age and then she turns into the whiny 14yr old spoiled brat she is. I actually lost a lot of respect for the girl and her attitude but then thought “can I blame her?”. Her parents let her do what she wanted and then she spent close on 1yr of her trip completely isolated, how would I turn out after that period of time. She became uncomfortable to be around others, she became incredibly arrogant, and when she says things like “I don’t need my dad anymore” or “I have been away from dad for a year, I don’t miss him anymore” – and then a month later her dad flies to meet her in Darwin and fixes everything on her boat for her. I thought she needed to be taught some bloody respect and discipline. Discipline she has learned herself, more than she can imagine, keeping herself alive for so long. But then she abandons Holland and refuses to go back there, even removing the Dutch flag from her boat and exchanging it for a New Zealand one. So much so, at the end of her voyage she finds a crew member, one good looking guy a bit older than her, and decides to continue her journey, this time to New Zealand, the place she was born at while at sea, and the place she had to miss on her journey. I think hormones required some male companionship and damn you all for the support – how about keeping it coming?

 

Jillian Schlesinger, Emily McAllister, Laura Dekker, Solo Sailing, Round the world sailing, Maidentrip, Maidentrip Movie, Maidentrip review, Antenna Documentary Festival, sailing, jason king
MAIDENTRIP – THE REVIEW FOR THE ANTENNA DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL

 

Do not get me wrong, I enjoyed watching this for the inspiration, and what was I really expecting from a 14yr old, but the part I disliked the most about this film, as she hand films everything, she never shows us any of the greatest feats on film, the camera is always away for the dire situations, no shots of her rounding the capes, but newspaper clippings shown on film instead. This was incredibly disappointing – it was as if the film really did not care about the incredible challenges faced and destroyed, but instead wanted to show a pop song version of the journey. Respect for what she did but I disapprove of not being able to see it. 

To get the film made and all the footage edited, along with some amazing animations, they KICKSTARTED the project and raised over $5000- to get it done. I think I expected more from a film about someone I would find inspirational, I found I did not like the person as much as the idea of the person. I suppose we got too close to the actual person, Laura, as it is such a personal journey, but it came across for me more like a “look at me, I can sail, how awesome am I, screw you all”.

And apologies – unfortunately there is no trailer available for this film that I can find.

I do not know why Laura bugged me so much but don’t listen to me, suss it out for yourself, IMDB (from 17 reviews) is rating it as 8.5 out of 10 and the film does have some awesome moments of beauty and soul.

For me, sadly not as high.

 

3 Pops