Hydro Soul in Thailand
Images and Pre-Release Screener courtesy of Stratospheric Industries Inc.
Hydro Soul, is a beautifully shot film (with great music) that lifts the human spirit right along with each of the featured athletes. The location of Koi Samui Thailand certainly plays a starring role as we are whisked through urban and rural beauty throughout. A memorable playground to be sure.
In the early days of any new sport there is always a community of people connected by a shared passion and pure in their love for what they are participating in that move it forward. Before the fame, before the money, before the prime-time televised competitions there are the trailblazing years where early adopters fall in love and make it up as they go along. Hydro Soul is a 40 minute journey that does a masterful job of tapping into the simple, yet powerful, love of flight and friendship.
Featured athletes in this film are Hydro Fest 2016 Champion Ben Merrell, Ladies 2016 Flyboard World Champion Kristen Smoyer, H2RO World Ranked #3 Jetpack Pro Mike Traster, Original Gangsta Frazier Grandison, the flight brothers Jordan and Chase Finley, Nate Sinisgalli, Dean O’Malley, Troy Stowe, Larry Katz, and Amber Hookway. Both the X-Jets NX Jetpack and Jetblade are on display in the film with these athletes freestyling for crowds on the beach, navigating their first encounter with an inflatable Jaxx and even getting up close and personal with some uniquely beautiful Thailand rocks.
Hydro comic Troy Stowe provides the levity off the water while Shaw Norris narrates and communicates the history of X-Jets (aka Stratospheric). Carey Whitley and Lyle Preese round out the crew and help support one of the key themes which is ‘teamwork’.
In the world of Hydroflight there have been a number of product manufacturers who have been navigating parallel journeys while the community of athletes and business owners intermingle, crossover and weave more complex paths. This film doesn’t attempt to tell the history of hydroflight but instead looks to inspire by focusing on the intense emotional connection these athletes have with the sport. Ten years from now it is easy to see this film providing a great ‘early days’ look at some of the pioneers who were in it for the love of flight and who paved the way for the sports future success.
There was one moment that had us wagging our finger in an angry parent fashion and that was when Chase Finley acting as a first time flyer is flown by a Thai rental operator without a life jacket on. C’mon Man! It would have at least cushioned the fall after Finley shocks the driver with a backflip sending him falling off the ski and dropping Chase out of the sky.
As X-Jets finalize the distribution deal for the film we are all very anxious for a global audience to see something much different than the competition based videos that make up our H2RO TV channel.
Congrats to all involved as you have created something very cool for all to enjoy!
Below Kristen Smoyer rips on the ‘blade’.
The Finley bros, Jordan and Chase were also ripping it up and we’ve got a look at Chase Finley getting creative with a new hydro boundary the ‘Jaxx’.
Hydro Soul Project, X-Jaxx, Chase Finley Where there are environmental limits and obstacles, style is no longer free. Chase Finley expanding the possibilities of the aerial/hydro boundary layer. Progressing beyond freestyle with no limitations on independence. #hydrosoulproject #xjets #jetblade #seriousmetal #seriousfun
Posted by X-Jetpacks on Friday, August 28, 2015
H2RO will continue to update this post as the Hydro Soul story unfolds. Anxious for the first video release!
Check out the Hydro Soul project on the X-Jets website and their first batch of great photos.