What do Berlin, Alexanderplatz and the streets, pavements and empty swimming pools of Santa Monica have to do with each other? Clue: Four wheels on a board. Boys in torn-up denim shorts, the wind in their sun-bleached hair, living out their dream of freedom. So there must be some connection. Our three male protagonists are out to conquer public space, they make their own boards, they smuggle parts. Then, almost thirty years later, they meet again – that is, two of them do – and look back on their heydays and their best tricks. Extensive use of Super 8mm archive footage creates a nostalgic mood.
Speaking of tricks: Some have suggested that this film should be called THIS AIN'T THE GDR. Which is more or less beside the point. THIS AIN'T CALIFORNIA is a heartfelt celebration of youth, rebellion and the board.