Then he suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) on the halfpipe, landing him in a coma for a month and a lifetime of disability.

Lucy Walker's documentary The Crash Reel paints an in-depth portrait of Pearce's life after the accident, briefly chronicling the athlete's impressive career before descending into the frustrating, heart-wrenching details of his recovery. The cameras are with him at each tiny step, from staring blankly and wide-eyed at his mother shortly after he regains consciousness, to learning to walk and struggling with memory loss — and through what feels like an interminable litany of appointments with doctors who beg him to slow down, be patient, take it easy, and give up his dream of returning to the sport he loves.

Pearce's story is a tragic and timely warning of what can happen to athletes at heightened risk of TBI. But The Crash Reel fails to take a stand on the broader issues it addresses, glossing over the problems of how quickly sports such as pro snowboarding have progressed to hazardous extremes; who pays for medical treatment in the cases of these athletes, who are often uninsured; and whether such dangerous sports should be legal in the first place. By the time The Crash Reel ends, when you're as tired of hearing doctors say no as Pearce is, you'll wish more of the film had been spent pondering whether sports entertainment is worth risking the lives of its stars.

Rio 2096 isn't a story for children.
Rio 2096 isn't a story for children.


Venus and Serena: Starring Venus Williams, Serena Williams, John McEnroe, Billie Jean King, Anna Wintour, and Bill Clinton. Directed by Maiken Baird and Michelle Major. 7 p.m. Saturday, March 9, at the Olympia Theater at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts, 174 E. Flagler St., Miami.

Rio 2096: A Story of Love and Fury: Starring Selton Mello and Camila Pitanga. Directed by Luiz Bolognesi. 9:30 p.m. Thursday, March 7, and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 9, at O Cinema, 90 NW 29th St., Miami.

Pietà: Starring Lee Jeong-jin, Jo Min-soo, Kang Eunjin, and Kim Jae-rok. Directed by Kim Ki-duk. 11:45 p.m. Friday, March 8, at O Cinema.

The Crash Reel: Starring Kevin Pearce, Shaun White, Mason Aguirre, and Jake Burton. Directed by Lucy Walker. 6:15 p.m. Thursday, March 7, and 5:15 p.m. Friday, March 8, at Regal Cinemas South Beach, 1100 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach.

Vinyl Days: Starring Akemi Nakamura, Emilia Attías, Fernán Mirás, Inés Efron, and Santiago Caamaño. Directed by Gabriel Nesci. 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 8, and 1:30 p.m. Sunday, March 10, at Regal Cinemas South Beach.

Vinyl Days: Love, friendship, and vinyl rec­ords drive the plot of Vinyl Days, writer/director Gabriel Mesci's tale of four friends who bonded as children when an angry boyfriend dumped a rack of records out of an apartment window as his girlfriend walked out. "We were baptized," says a voice-over by the adult version of one of the boys.

It seems like a noble beginning, but aspirations for an Argentine High Fidelity fall flat. Vinyl Days is a well-shot and fine-paced movie, even while edging close to two hours. But Mesci's writing never invests in the small things needed to flesh out the characters and their passion for the music that's the foundation of his story. Instead, it sets up convoluted jokes that nearly derail the film. A woman's Yoko Ono-like threat to a Beatles cover band fronted by one of the friends seems cute — until the musician's apprehension toward her reveals a racist bent more than a paranoid wariness toward the odd coincidence.

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