Arguably my personal favorite short film shown at the HIFF university students screening was Skating is (my) Life which was Produced, directed, shot and edited by Kyle Motonaga. This documentary style film follows aspiring local skate boarder Kekoa Andrade as he takes us through his every day skating routine as he prepares for upcoming competitions (spoiler: skating is in fact his life). What made this film stand apart from the others at the screening was the cinematography and the soundtrack. Of course a big part of my interest stemmed from my prior interest in skate boarding, an activity that is very entertaining to watch, especially when filmed properly. The points where I think the cinematography stand out are the scenes where Kekoa is riding around and doing tricks on his skate board, Motonaga was able to pair the perfect music and timing to make the scenes flow effortlessly. There was an overall chill vibe to the aesthetic of this documentary that I don’t often see in this genre and I believe this is due in part to the editing, timing, and cinematography. I also really enjoyed the segment where we are introduced to Jackie, who is an older woman that began learning to skate from the help of Kekoa. Not only was she super sweet but there was a bad ass quality about her. She also proves the message that it doesn’t matter how old you are, you can always learn something new if you put in the right amount of effort. There was a lot of motivational undertones in this film, especially from its main focus, Kekoa. It seemed like he was able to make every thing skate related into a metaphor for life. The structure of the documentary flowed very easily and you could tell Motonaga put a lot of thought into the timing of his transitions. The only thing I think could have made this short film better would be for it to have a longer time line so that we could see more of what unfolds after Kekoa leaves Hawaii for the competitions on the mainland.