film by Ian Romaker May 12, 2021
Illegal Civilization is a skateboarding collective that grew from the concrete. The group’s efforts are a byproduct of the underground, and they fill the void that has long been open in terms of skateboarding recognition.
Illegal Civilization carries a certain type of unbothered disposition that makes it appealing and enticing.
Skateboarding and graffiti are seen much in the same realm and dismissed due to their raucous nature and association with debauchery.
Oftentimes, the members that comprise Illegal Civilization would skip school, smoke weed, and skate for hours. They were doing what teenagers do, but they sought out to make it monumental.
Mikey Alfred is the man who made it all possible with his fisheye lens and propensity to capture the obscene. Obscenities fly, bodies hit the floor and smooth tricks are all captured within the Illegal Civilization.
Mikey’s efforts are truly commendable because they showcase every angle of footage – not just the landings.
Within the social media era, we often post what we want people to see – the accomplishments, achievements, and facade of success. This is where Mikey stands on firm ground: he displays every bit of footage. The rawness of his work still separates him entirely.
Illegal Civilization was born and bred via documentation. Sure, it wouldn’t be possible without the incredible groundwork laid via networking and countless hours of skate practice as well. But, without the savviness and ability to capture footage – none of their output would be available for consumption.
The idea for Illegal Civilization was conceived at Verdugo Skatepark in Glendale, CA.
This group set out to push the boundaries with defiance and rebellious nature. They sought to redefine the genre through sick tricks, defiance, and classic skating videos. IC managed to tackle all three of these and also took it from just plain videos to entire compilations.
The first compilation was held in the form of a viewing party and not many people showed up. Yet still, the buzz continued to build. The second compilation viewing party was held and the footage was filmed in New York.
“We were old enough to be alone, but young enough not to give a f***”Mikey Alfred
The third compilation did not receive the response that was expected, so the group decided to move on from viewing parties and foray into the film industry.
Mikey faced the hardest decision of his young career when he had to choose between going on the Flower Boy tour with Tyler the Creator or producing the skate film, Mid90s.
He chose Mid90s and started to build very closely with cast members on set. Working on an official feature film made Mikey less regretful about the fact that he turned down an offer to work with Erica Silverman on the set of Palo Alto. Therefore, Mid90s provided a small victory for skateboarding and continued to push the subculture forward.
Look for Illegal Civilization to make a major splash in the film industry now that they have gathered their footing. Their next feature film is titled, North Hollywood and will delve into the trials and tribulations of becoming a pro skater.