tek's rating:

Johnny Kapahala: Back on Board, Disney Channel
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Well, the title suggested this might be a sequel, but I wasn't sure. The stuff Johnny said to the viewers at the start also made it sound like a sequel. It wasn't until some time into the movie that I thought, "Wasn't there a Disney Channel movie called 'Johnny Tsunami' that this might be a sequel to?" But I haven't seen that. I probably will eventually, but meanwhile, I didn't feel like it was necessary to see that movie first. And I enjoyed this well enough, I guess. There's this teenaged surfer named Johnny Kapahala (whose grandfather calls him "Pono," Hawaiian for, um, righteousness, goodness, balance, contentment, positivity, etc.), who in the first movie I guess moved from Hawaii to Vermont, where he took up snowboarding and, apparently, skateboarding. The sequel is about him and his parents returning to Hawaii for Johnny's grandfather's wedding.

He's marrying a woman named Carla (played by Robyn Lively, who we've always quite liked). I think when Johnny first met her (his parents showed up a couple days later), he may have been slightly surprised that she was younger than his grandfather, but I did like that no one ever actually said anything about that, it wasn't an issue at all in the movie. (And don't make any wisecracks about my making an issue of it in my review, cuz that's not the point. I'm making a positive issue of it not being an issue. It's completely different.) The one thing that did seem a bit odd, though, is that even after meeting her, he continued to assume that her son Chris, Johnny's soon to be uncle, would be an adult. In fact, Chris turned out to be 12 years old. So, most of the movie was about Johnny having to look after him, and trying to befriend him and help him get over his general displeasure at the whole current situation. Pretty standard plot for movies like this.

Johnny had some help from his friend Sam, as well as a girl named Val (who we like). Chris was hanging out with a group of teenagers called the Dirt Devils, who were into dirtboarding. Val was one of them, and she soon befriended Johnny, which didn't seem to make Chris any happier. It seems obvious that he had a crush on her, though nothing particularly overt was ever done with that, either. Just one of various reasons for Chris to resent Johnny, along with his boarding skills. Of course, Chris was better than Johnny at dirtboarding, which Johnny had never done before. I suppose Val being one of them may be one of the reasons Chris was so desperate to join the team, but I think he really did enjoy the sport, as well as wanting to be accepted by the other guys on the team. But there's really only one other Dirt Devil we get to know at all in the movie, the leader of the team, a total jerk named Jared. Who was close to the mentor of the team, a guy named Troy who owned a dirtboard shop.

Well, pretty much everything that happens in the movie turns out to be somehow interconnected. The reason Carla moved to Hawaii in the first place is that she inherited an old surf shop, which apparently hadn't been in business for some time. And Johnny's grandfather, a local surf legend himself, was going to help her reopen the business, on the same day as their wedding, no less. However, Troy was secretly trying to sell his dirtboard shop and move to California. But his buyer dropped out, because it looked like the surf shop was going to be too much competition. It gets even more complicated when we learn who the potential buyer was (but I'm not going to spoil it). So, Troy was not pleased.

Um... what else to say? Well... I dunno. It's all pretty predictable, but it had some nice touches, and it was pretty mellow and fun, I guess. Not something I need to see again, but I might not mind watching it again someday. After seeing the first movie. Someday.


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