Rising Son: The
Legend of Skateboarder Christian Hosoi
Details: Documentary by Cesario Montano 2006, 1 hr. 39 minutes
About: One of the most talented and stylish skate kids ever, makes it big,
goes bad, goes good
Action: Good bowl skating, lots of famous people skating and talking about
Kid Friendly? If the kids are old enough to understand this morality tale of
how drugs can ruin a life and faith can help repair it.
This is a long movie, and doesn't really get moving until 25 or 30 minutes
into it, so use the Fast Forward liberally if you must move to the action.
You'll see that Christian Hosoi and his dad Ivan "Pops" Hosoi were close.
His dad was his strongest supporter, biggest fan, and buddy, which is
heart-warming. Dad was also a skater and ran a skate park, and enjoyed
watching young Christian blossom and surpass, until he became the most
stylish young skater on the scene.
Tony Hawk was the rival who Christian faced off against most often in the
mid 80's comp scene. One of the best scenes is when Tony Hawk and a host of
other skaters are interviewed separately about Christian and their answers
are cut into a montage where they all say what a cool trendsetter he was, in
rapid fire staccato.
Christian had businesses, sponsors, money, girls, and was a "swag magnet" to
his friends' astonishment after going "pro" at 14. He had closets full of
new clothes and gear from skate companies that he would wrangle in his easy
way. The movie doesn't make a timeline clear, but his first taste of the
drug speed was the beginning of the end for him. That, and a depressed skate
economy in the 90's caused him to spiral down into a state where he lost his
friends and his ambition, and didn't even skate any more. In 2000 he was
arrested at the Honolulu airport with a pound and a half of crystal
Hosoi found Christianity in prison, and through the guidance of his
girlfriend/wife and her family. He was paroled in 2004, resumed his
skateboarding career, and is very active in his church. Read more at
The story parallels that of Mark "Gator" Rogowski,another skater who also
had a movie made about him, but who doesn't seem to have rebounded on the
positive side like Hosoi. That movie is good too - read more about it at
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