“There are filters between me and you. Unless you know me like my Dad does, assume you don’t know me. I am more than what the filters let you see. And less. WhoisJOB is my attempt to talk directly. Through my art, video. Its taken me 3 years to create an hour without filters. When its done, please watch. Then hate. Or love. Or ignore. Or whatever.” -Jamie O’Brien.
Who is J.O.B. starts with a quote by Earnest Hemingway: “ A mans past invariably colors his future”. This couldn’t be more true for Jaime, who was abandoned by his mom as a young child, and had a father (who was a lifeguard on the North Shore) push him harder than any child should have to be pushed. He grew up as the minority in Hawaii, and was beat up and picked on (one of three white kids in a class of 100) during school. To make school even more troublesome, he had tubes in his ears, and was put in special ed. His dad ducted taped his ears closed as a kid while surfing, yet Jaime persevered.
The movie takes you through Jaime’s life, mixed with trips to Fiji, Tahiti, Hawaii, Mexico, Indonesia, and Micronesia. Some of the surf he gets in Bali doesn’t seem real, yet he destroys every wave he surfs. The soundtrack starts off with slow driving electro house music by The Glitch Mob (who are sick live), and progresses to indie and a speed metal conclusion as he dominates Pipeline in his own backyard. The cinematography and editing makes this film interesting for non surfers as well, and they capture the rain falling (both in surf and on land) in a way that makes you feel like you are also in the middle of a refreshing rainstorm.
Some highlights from the interviews are with Kelly Slater and Bruce Irons, who both illustrate how Jaime can be an asshole, but he commands respect. It is also interesting to see how Jaime’s father still can recall pushing Jaime as a child beyond the limit as if there were no other way. It then crosses back to Jaime, and you can see as an adult Jaime still turns into a child as he recalls how his father would tell him that he would end up working in the pineapple fields if he failed. Mix in some blood, stitches, amazing waves, Red Bull’s resources, and 3 years of filming, and Who is J.O.B. will keep you stoked until the end. You can see how Jaime thinks on his Twitter (Kelly and Bruce may be right), and you can pick up the DVD Here.