Dana Brown’s surfing documentary isn’t particularly insightful or even half-assed philosophical about one of the most majestic and fascinating sports in the world, but boy oh boy does it sure look pretty. Brown has captured some incredible waves — on camera, that is — at Oahu’s legendary North Shore, Da Nang in Vietnam (where Robert Duvall exclaimed “Charlie don’t surf!” in Apocalypse Now) and even Dublin, where the stormy Irish weather makes for some particularly rough waters, all whilst interviewing the men and women (and even children) who consider their hobby/sport/lifestyle/whatever of choice to be the manifestation of an intense spiritual calling. Brown’s overuse of slow motion and setting everything to intrusive music (the use of VAST’s “Touched” is particularly annoying) as well as presenting the Wisconsin lake surfing scene as a place of bumbling clowns prone to wipeouts keep this doc hanging five rather than ten, but there are some undeniably incredible sights to behold here, ones that will either inspire you to try out surfing yourself or swear you’ll never in a million years attempt such madness.
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