This is the first list in a series of recommendations, on topics that inform us as individuals and as a company. Travel, adventure, nature, ocean, culture, soul, art, music, community. Today we talk our kind of surf movies.
Words: Ed Templeton
The surf films that I connect with and that have motivated me to give it all up and just go surfing show more than just ‘rad waves’.
A great surf movie needs to inspire us, to say something important, to move us, to make us grateful for our time spent in the ocean and to make us desperate to get back out there.
A marriage between music, cinematography, content, nature & documentary.
Movies depicting kaleidoscopic views of surfing, not just world champs surfing gnarly waves on tiny boards. For me a great surf movie should somehow get across the soul of surfing, that intangible thing that drives so many of us to the sea each day.
This list below forms a significant part of the motivations and foundations of Soul & Surf.
Director: Albert Falzon. 1972
One of the first surf movies of its kind, an artistic travel and lifestyle documentary with an amazing original score. It is also credited with bringing Bali as a surf destination to the attention of surfers around the world for the first time.
Director: Larry Yates. 1974
An early example of the off the beaten path surf/adventure/discovery-type movie that has motivated so many of us to continue the ’search’.
Directors: Jack Johnson, Chris & Emmet Malloy. 2000
Beautifully shot on 16mm film, this movie documents the life and times of a pro surfer. It has an infamous section shot in the Andaman islands, pre-earthquake and tsunami, which inspired us to run a few crazy Pop-Ups to the Andamans.
Alex Knost in Sprout – Photo by Thomas Campbell
Director: Thomas Campbell. 2004
A beautifully shot film with a great soundtrack and a totally open minded look at the joy of surfing, it shows how many ways we have to access the ocean and feel the glide.
5. Glass Love
Director: Andrew Kidman. 2004
This film explores the generational link and love of surfing that gets passed down through families.
Directors: Taylor Steele, Chris Malloy. 2007
A film that explores the foundations of surfing with a soul soundtrack. A film that looks as good as it feels.
Director: Nathan Oldfield. 2008
An exploration of the variety of ways we can approach wave riding, beautifully shot and once again, a great soundtrack.
The Present – Photo by Thomas Campbell
8. The Present
Director: Thomas Campbell. 2009
Another surf film that could be a music video. Shot on film, combining exploration, experimental surf craft and soulful surfers.
9. The Drifter
Director: Taylor Steele. 2009
A biopic of pro surfer Rob Machado as he drops out of the competition surf business to focus on the soul of surfing.
Director: Chris Malloy. 2010
Recreating a trip that Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard took in 1968 from California to Patagonia, combing surfing, sailing, climbing and adventure.
Director: Taylor Steele. 2010
A cross between a music video and travel documentary with surfing at its core. Shot in off the beaten path locations including India, Peru, Vietnam, Africa, Iceland.
Chris Del Moro in The Heart & The Sea – Nathan Oldfield
Director: Nathan Oldfield. 2012
The film celebrates the joy that lies at the very centre of a surfing life: family, friends and a shared intimacy with the sea.
13. Spirit of Akasha
Director: Andrew Kidman. 2014
This 2014 film was made as a follow up to the classic Morning Of The Earth. Aiming to recapture the values and spirit of the original, but for the modern world.
14. North of the Sun
Director: Inge Wegge +Jørn Ranum. 2015
An arctic island adventure, following two surfers as they hole up, alone in a driftwood cabin, for a nine-month Norwegian winter of surfing.
Mexican Summer & Pilgrim Surf + Supply . 2019
A surreal symbiosis of music, surf, the environment and local culture.
What are your favourite surf movies? Let us know by leaving a comment below
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