Feature Films 2016

Director: Tim Burnham
Info: California, 2016, 62min
Showing: 8 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Waves are Wedges when they boast the same convulsive consequence of a warped weirdness in the barrel when they break. Usually man-made, when swell bounces off piers, or groynes, or walls, this is the story of THE Wedge of Newport Beach. The most hardcore Wedge in the world is woven into the fabric of Californian surf folklore tighter than the braided beanie atop a Peruvian pensioner’s head. Sit back, suck on some anti-inflammatories to stave off a brain explosion as you are swept along and over the falls in this partly awe-inspiring doccie laced with elements of a horror movie.

Director: Peter Hamblin
Info: USA, Hawaii, South Africa, 2016, 50min
Showing: 7 Dec, 7pm, Jack Black & All African Night 10 Dec, 8pm, Labia

Who is this Frank Solomon? Big wave surfer from Cape Town, or someone we don’t know at all? No one knows the real Frank Solomon. Nooit bru, you might not even know the fake Frank. The weirdness of Peter Hamblin’s filmmaking morphs with this mysterious hook, and movie magic is made. It’s a smash hit everywhere it’s screened, and looks a shoe-in for the Surfer Poll of the year. How did it come about? Well, Frank met Peter in a bar. The rest is his story. See what we did there?

SORRIA – SA Premiere
Director: Gabriel Novis,
Info: Mexico, Indonesia, California, Hawaii, 2016, 42min
Showing: Ladies Night 11 Dec, 8pm, Labia

Sorria means smile in Portuguese. Director Gabriel Novis wants to communicate the personality of a new generation of Brazilian surfers. With insane surfing by the likes of Filipe Toledo, Yago Dora, Jesse Mendes, Ian Gouveia, and Victor Bernardo, never mind smile: this is the broad grin of the Brazilian Storm. This is the deep bass of multiple guffawing, and the high pitched treble of worldwide hooting. Make way for this explosion of talent. It goes way beyond the restraints of contest surfing.


Director: Joaquin and Julian Azulay
Info: Argentina, 2016, 88min (subtitles)
Showing: 8 Dec, 8pm, Labia

Ay. Like. Bruuuu! We’re hangin’ with those chilled Spanish ous the Gauchos del Mar bros again. This time, we’re on a new madcap mission into a remote but majestically beautiful hinterland to find epic surf. And true to the brothers’ barrel radar, they find the proverbial needle in a haystack during 53 days of exploring Peninsula Mitre of Argentina, a large area in Tierra del Fuego on the southeastern tip of South America a spit away from icebergs and Antarctica. They surf a world-class wave that no human has surfed before. Quick! Before it’s gone.

Director: Heather Hudson
Info: California, 2016, 43min
Showing: Ladies Night 11 Dec, 8pm, Labia

Another fine documentary celebrating a group of hand-selected women and their unique approach to surfing and life. Director Heather Hudson follows on from the first Women and Waves film with another crafted look at the state of surfing today from a feminine perspective. She documents the story of six women who celebrate life in life-affirming ways, with none of that “I can’t do it” crap. This one is also one for the sister sliders of the surfing soul.

Director: Marcy Cravat
Info: USA, UK, Mexico, Indonesia, Grenada, 2014, 74min
Showing: 11 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Angel Azul is no craft brew for a Cape Town IPA. It means Blue Angel, the title of this trippy feature about the extraordinary journey of artist Jason deCaires Taylor, who comes up with an innovative and deeply ironic plan to ease the perilous state of our coral reefs. He makes hauntingly beautiful underwater statues in shockingly human-like form. Over time, like Johnny Depp and his mottled collection of pirate reprobates, this collective symbol of human destruction begins to become a coral reef. And thus this link between us and the ocean turns the tide and reverses the trend. Deep!

Producer: Red Bull Media House
Info: North Pacific, 2016, 90min
Showing: Red Bull Night, 9 Dec, 8pm, Labia 

From the creators of The Art of Flight, this snowboarding epic stars iconic athlete Travis Rice as he plots a 16,000 mile route to follow the hydrological storm cycle around the north Pacific, including brain-bursting sequences of snowboard action in the back country of Wyoming. You will be transfixed to your seat, craft beer fused to your sweaty mit, while the mind-blowing imagery, ridiculous 4K footage, arty blend of surf and snowboarding, and high-octane cinematography blasts your socks off.

Producer: Red bull Media House
Info: Zambesi River, 2016, 45min
Showing: Red Bull Night 9 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Two handsome young chaps Jonathan Paredes and Orlando Duque, go on a mellow little trip. They have a conversation that ends something like this: “Hey, I know, why don’t we jump off the cliff at Victoria Falls and freefall for 100 metres. That might be quite fun.” The place where the mighty Zambesi River hurls itself into an ancient abyss, through a rainbow, and into a chasm more than a kilometre long, and named with solemn reverence, The Smoke That Thunders? “Yes, exactly” say our Red Bull cliff divers, “That’s the place! Let’s go there!”

Director: Dustin Humphrey
Info: Deux ex Machina, 2016, 53min
Showing: 3 December Clifton 4th Beach

Who would have thought that motorbikes and mini-mals make for such compelling viewing. Two mates pack their hipster quiver of boards, two bikes and a $50 tent into – or on – a 70s Land Rover. Spraying black volcanic sand from their boneys or crystalline ocean drops from their boards, they venture from southern Bali to Sumatra’s Lagundri Bay to find out if the pioneering spirit remains alive. You decide.


THE ACCORD – SA Premiere<
Director: RC Cone
Info: Iceland, 2016, 18min
Showing: 7 Dec, 8pm, Jack Black

Icelandic surfers get quite grumpy with the relentless North Wind. Growing up as a surfer in Iceland depends on a fractious and often volatile relationship between the puffed up face of the mythical North Wind (played by a very funny actor) and the curiously hopeful visage of a funny young surfer with an unpronounceable name (Heiðar Logi Elíasson). See? Told you. Our surfers makes a deal, the Accord. Here, there are no surf shops, guidebooks or webcams. Out here, we is snowed immaculate.

Directors: Jeremy Joyce, Rob Lockyear
Info: London, 2015, 22min
Showing: 7 Dec, 7pm, Jack Black

If you haven’t had enough of brave tales of mullets who live inside a giant freezer, come on another journey to the icy fringes of in search of a mythical wave. Only this time, it’s a bit different. Sure, friendship is tested and the expanding frontiers push fortitude to its very limits, but enjoy the much anticipated debut from the crew behind ‘The Shaper’ and ‘#vanlife’, whose fingers are once again on the throbbing pulse of the surfing zeitgeist. Urk. Ack! Splutter!! Don’t squeeze so tight!

THE ZONE – SA Premiere
Director: Jack Coleman
Info: Australia, 2016, 35min
Showing: 8 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Welcome to an alternate surfing dimension. One where creativity and imagination are boundless, and the vicissitudes of life pale in comparison to the utter joy of experiencing the moment. Where surfers entwine with their environment, to create, and express themselves, in a place called THE ZONE. Shot over a two-year time period throughout Australia, South Africa, Costa Rica, Mexico, Hawaii, and California. Did I just take a hallucinogenic substance, or did I not change one word of that glowing wodge of PR puffery ?


Director: Nathan Myers
Info: Bali, 2016, 26min
Showing:  7 Dec, 7pm, Jack Black

Gerry Lopez pioneered so much about surfing and style. In our minds eye, he was the first to charge Pipeline like it was a Muizenberg ankle snapper. In 1974, he found Uluwatu – a magical and empty vision of pure nature lining a lush unspoiled paradise oozing spiritual enlightenment. He returns 40 years later to find it bustling, developed, and different. But after a week of surfing and yoga, he taps into its true spirit. The wave endures but we age. This man will ease your fears of growing old.

Director: Matt Davis. Producer: ABC Foreign Correspondent
Info: Cape Town, South Africa, 2016, 27min
Showing: All Africa Night 10 Dec, 8pm, Labia

How do you free troubled kids from the violence and poverty of South Africa’s broken townships? For starters, you teach them how to surf. Award-winning Aussie television journalist Sally Sara comes to Cape Town to report on the idea that’s inspiring youngsters to unleash their best. The skills and research structures so rigorously formed after years of hard work by our friends at Waves For Change begin to yield meaningful dividends.

Directors: Kayleigh Tuck, Aphile-Aphile Sololo & Sebastian Burger<
Info: School of Journalism and Media Studies, Rhodes University, 24mins
Showing: All African Night 10 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Meet Zulu surfer Samukelisiwe Cele. As the only black female surfer in South Africa, she wants to be world champion, but must first grapples with her circumstances, family pressures and the need to be a typical teenager. Her story illuminates the difficulties of being one of a kind in a competitive and sometimes alienating sporting world.

Director: Ana Catarina Teles
Info: Brazil, 2016, 13min
Showing: 8 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Again, we see the power of surfing as a tool for social transformation. What better place to apply the healing powers of the ocean than Brazil? In the sea, we are all equal, and in this equality lies the connection between body, mind, self-knowledge and our relationship with the natural world.

Director: Andrew Kirkby
Info: South Africa, 2016, 28min
Showing: Red Bull Night 9 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Graffiti artist Falko One has travelled the world to spread his art into the urban landscapes of far-off lands. In this Red Bull Media House film, he brings it home, heading out into the Karoo and dorpies of the hinterland, including Riebeek Wes, painting homes and changing perceptions.

Director: Guy Mac
Info: South Africa, 2016, 25min
Showing: 10 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Risky Business is about Bromdog Matt Bromley linking up with international friends around the world and chasing big, risky waves around the globe. From the cold waters of Cape Town, Ireland, Iceland and Mavericks, to the tropics in Hawaii and Indonesia, its all about risky pits or giant waves. The film climaxes with the best big wave paddle season at Jaws in history.


BRUCE GOLD – Last of the Great Surfing Hippies
Director: Anders Melchior
Info: Jeffreys Bay, 8min
Showing: 3 Dec, 9pm, Clifton & All African Night 10 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Bruce Gold has managed to survive for almost 50 years in Jeffrey’s Bay without having a job. He is among the last of a dying breed of surfers who have dedicated their entire lives to riding waves, and haven’t gone completely bonkers. Well, maybe a bit. This little flick has won awards. Chaa Brah!

Viewers Choice: Best Short Santa Cruz Surf Film Festival
Best International Short – London Surf / Film Festival

Director: Alan Watts
Info: Deep blue sea, 2013, 6min
Showing: 3 Dec, 9pm, Clifton & Ladies Night 11 Dec, 6pm, Labia 

Alan Watts, three sirens, and three Humpback Whales dance together in a short film. Where you are now is your dream. What will you do? Trippy visceral dip into the supreme beauty of the deep blue. Shooo!

Special Thanks

Dolphin Pacific Diving

Director: Luca Merli
Info: Canary Islands, 2016, 8min
Showing: 3 Dec, 9pm, Clifton & Ladies Night 11 Dec, 8pm, Labia

Leah Dawson cruises the Canary Islands from her Hawaiian home with her unpretentious attitude, graceful surf style, and a soulful off-key lilt in the ballads she so wistfully sings. You will fall in love with an ethereal creature grounded by earth, and energised by water and the lunar pull of the moon.

Director: Jess Colquhoun
Info: South Africa, 2016, 11min
Showing: 7 Dec, 8pm, Jack Black & 8 Dec, 8pm, Labia & All African Night 10 Dec, 8pm, Labia

Hidden north of Durban, in the rural regions of the Valley of a Thousand Hills, a secret spot for young shredders grows in stature and popularity. The Indigo Skate Camp empowers Zulu villagers to learn and grow through the language of skateboarding and the opportunities it brings.

Director: Andrew Kaineder
Info: Jeffreys Bay, 2016, 5min
Showing: 3 Dec, 9pm, Clifton &  7 Dec, 8pm, Jack Black & All African Night 10 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Derek Hynd has perfected the art of riding JBay on fin-free boards to the point that he’s starting to look like he’s riding WITH fins. Here he offers insights into his commune with nature, and his philosophy on life. And then of course there is the surfing, shot during winter last year. My word.

Director: Cyrus Sutton
Info: California, 10min
Showing: Ladies Night 11 Dec, 6pm, Labia

Fields of View is a day in the life of some of Cyrus Sutton’s friends who live creative, environmentally conscious lives and happen to surf. All of Cyrus’ friends were given a GoPro and filmed themselves going about their daily lives. Kiff.

Director: Dougal Paterson
Info: Cape Town, 10min
Showing: All African Night 10 Dec, 8pm, Labia & Ladies Night 11 Dec, 8pm, Labia

Like Aphrodite, Cape Town lady slider Bernie Shelly is of the sea. She built herself a ghost ship, then sent it out before herself, into a dark and angry ocean of pain and hopelessness. This is a film about a 70 year old surfer’s journey back from the mists of nothingness.

Director: Darius Deva
Info: Australia, 2016, 8min
Showing: 8 Dec, 8pm, Labia

In the 70s mould of George Greenough’s hand-made water housings for innovative POV barrel riding, this young Aussie director crowd-funded this super HD slo-mo tube fest that will take you right into the ocean and not let you out until you flop back into your chair after 8 minutes of willingly suspending your disbelief in a salty immersive blast of visual overflow.

Director: Like Giants
Info: South Africa, 2016, 6min
Showing: All African Night 10 Dec, 6pm, Labia

The groundswell of support for alternative approaches is becoming increasingly evident all over the globe. One of the pioneer of greener surfing is Durban’s John McCarthy, former pro surfer and media mogul who has altered his course to “make, ride and share greener surfboards”.