WHERE: Honolulu Museum of Art Doris Duke Theatre, 901 Kinau St., between Ward Avenue and Victoria Street (at rear of museum) TICKETS: Regular screenings: $10, $8 museum members. Opening-night reception July 6, 6-7:30 p.m.: $15, $12 museum members. Closing night reception July 28, 6-7:30 p.m.: $15, $12 museum members. Festival flash pass: $90, $72 museum members, excludes opening and closing night receptions.
HONOLULU, HAWAI‘I (July 6)—This summer the Honolulu Museum of Art brings together 24 feature and short films from all four corners of the world to give audiences a chance to experience the best of surf cinema at the 6th Annual Honolulu Surf Film Festival. The month-long event, presented by Nordstrom, celebrates the heritage of surfing and its expanding horizons.
“It’s nothing new to say that surfing is a global phenomenon,” says Abbie Algar, film curator at the Honolulu Museum of Art. “But what is new is the fact that over the past few years surf filmmaking has become a transnational form of artistic and cultural expression. And this year we celebrate how the sport is thriving and developing throughout the world, providing powerful raw material for filmmakers almost everywhere.”
The film festival starts with an opening-night reception on July 6. Attendees can enjoy a live performance by Honolulu band Mano Kane, known for its Beatleseque harmonies, food and drinks for purchase from Kona Brewing Company, and a screening of Nathan Oldfield’s The Heart and the Sea. Tickets are $15, and $12 for museum members.
“We have films that look at everything from British surf history to eco-adventurers in Canada, from extreme surfers in Norway to surf roadtrippers in Italy,” says Algar. “As in past years, we’re also highlighting female surfers and filmmakers with the Lakey Peterson documentary Zero to 100 and the latest shorts from up-and-comers Heather Gordon (Party Mix) and Anna Jerstrom (Water Warriors)—these are definitely women to watch.”
Several films this year spotlight global environmental issues within the context of surfing, opening up discussion on how surfing can transcend itself as a sport. “When selecting films for this festival, we of course look for ones that showcase the awe-inspiring nature of surfing, but we also seek out films that explore social and environmental issues from a new perspective—and surf filmmakers are increasingly doing this,” says Algar. Documentaries such as Groundswell, directed by surf film veteran Chris Malloy, explore the proposed Northern pipeline in British Columbia. Isolated, produced by actor Ryan Phillipe, looks at the remote, war-torn region of West Papua New Guinea through the eyes of five feral surfers.
And filmmakers are increasingly looking beyond well-known surf stars to uncover new stories, as with Karl Lear’s Waverider, about Fijian boatman and surfer Isei Tokovou. Last year he won the wildcard entry to the Volcom Fiji Pro. Instead of hauling visiting surfers and their expensive gear to perfect breaks, he was competing against the likes of Kelly Slater and Joel Parkinson. It’s high drama and poignancy on the waves. The production company isn’t just capitalizing on Tokovou’s story—for each copy of the film sold, Waverider is donating $2 to a fund established for Isei and the Fijian Surf Assocation, to help the aspiring surfer finance his bid to reach the upper ranks of competition.
The festival closes July 28 with Bud Browne’s classic Gun Ho, narrated by O‘ahu’s own Peter Cole. The reception will features vintage surf music and food and drinks for purchase from the Kona Brewing Company. It has become a tradition to end the fest with a nostalgic look at surfing. “We pay tribute to the old school with Gun Ho and a panel discussion with surf legends Peter Cole, Ricky Grigg, and Kimo Hollinger,” says Algar. Tickets are $15, and $12 for museum members.
Regular ticket prices for the films are $12 and $10 for museum members. Festival passes are $90, and $72 for museum members. The pass allows guests to attend 10 screenings, excluding the opening and closing night receptions.
Opening-night reception, July 6, 6-7:30 p.m.: Enjoy a live performance by Mano Kane, plus food, beer and wine for purchase. $15, $12 museum members.
The Heart and the Sea Director: Nathan Oldfield. Australia, 2012, 85 mins. Hawai‘i premiere July 6 at 7:30pm; July 13 at 4pm; July 24 at 7:30pm A meditation on the joys at the center of a surfing life: family, friends and a shared intimacy with the sea. Filmed in Hawai‘i, Australia, New Zealand, France and Spain.
Jaws: Changing the Game Director: Wangdu Hovey. USA, 2012, 43 mins July 7 at 1pm; July 13 at 7:30pm; July 18 at 1pm See a group of surfers achieve what was previously deemed impossible: Riding Jaws, aka Pe‘ahi, without a Jet Ski. —with— Sine Qua Non: The Psychology of Big Wave Surfing (short) Director: Richard Yelland. USA, 2012, 24 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. See what it takes to pursue monstrous waves around the planet through the eyes of the world’s most decorated big-wave surfer, Greg Long.
Zero to 100 Director: Aaron Lieber. USA, 2012, 56 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. July 7 at 4pm; July 11 at 7:30pm; July 23 at 7:30pm This portrait of Lakey Peterson, one the most progressive women in surfing today, will have you laughing, crying and doing pushups by the end. —with— Party Mix (short) Director: Hayley Gordon. USA, 2013, 13 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. On the road with Kassia Meador, Jen Smith, and Mele Saili from San Diego to Tofino, British Columbia.
BoardRoom Director: Markus Davids. USA, 2012, 84 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. July 7 at 7:30pm; July 21 at 4pm; Aug 1 at 1pm The history of board creation with an all-star cast of shapers, including Gordon Clark, Greg Noll, Donald Takayama, Dick Brewer, Harold Iggy, and Renny Yater.
Bending Colours Director: Kai Neville. USA, 2012, 38 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. July 9 at 1pm; July 16 at 7:30pm; July 19 at 1pm Meet South African surfer Jordy Smith as he travels from one wave-rich locale to another in this mind-blowing portrait by friend and surf-film industry leader Kai Neville. —with— Here and Now Director: Nathan Myers. USA, 2012, 43 mins Shot in a day, this project brings together more than 25 of the world’s best filmmakers and surfers to document the world of surfing in a 24-hour period: May 2, 2012.
Groundswell Director: Chris Malloy. Canada/USA, 2012, 25 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. July 9 at 7:30pm; July 14 at 7:30pm; July 24 at 1pm Activists set sail along the British Columbia coast looking for surf—and learning about an oil pipeline construction that threatens to change the area forever. —with— Stand Director: Anthony Bonello and Nicolas Teichrob. Canada, 2012, 43 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. This visual poem mixes SUP and surf adventure with the issues surrounding the proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline threatening the British Columbia coast.
Endless Winter Director: Matt Crocker + James Dean. UK, 2012, 94 mins. July 10 at 1pm; July 12 at 7:30pm; July 30 at 7:30pm With its crap weather, the UK is home to one of the most unusual and colorful surf scenes on the planet. Go on a delightful romp in search of British surfing’s eccentric history. —with— Beyond the Scars (short) Director: Chris McClean. UK. 2012. 6 mins See what it means to be a coldwater surfer in exposed, freezing corners of the North Sea.
Signal Hill Speed Run Director: Jon Carnoy + Mike Horelick. USA, 2012, 90 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. July 10 at 7:30pm; July 20 at 4pm Narrated by Ben Harper, this film chronicles the birth of the world’s first skateboard race and explores how other 1970s extreme sports—hang gliding, big wave surfing, skateboarding and snowboarding—influenced its development.
Discovering Mavericks Director: Joshua Pomer. USA, 2012, 80 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. July 11 at 1pm; July 13 at 1pm; July 18 at 7:30pm The story of California’s most notorious big wave is one of triumph and incredible danger and loss. Get an insider’s view of the wave’s discovery and legend.
North of the Sun Directors: Jørn Ranum and Inge Wegge. Norway, 2012, 46 mins. July 12 at 1pm; July 21 at 7:30pm; July 31 at 7:30pm Surfers Inge and Jørn spend the winter in an isolated, uninhabited bay on an island in arctic Norway with nothing but clothes and surfboards. —with— El Mar Mi Alma Director: Stephen Jones. Australia, 2011, 55 mins. Shot by Hawai‘i-based cinematographer Dave Homcy, this film is an ode to Chile, its people, and the ocean that defines it.
Isolated Director: Justin LePera. USA, 2012, 85 mins. July 17 at 1pm; July 19 at 7:30pm; July 30 at 1pm Five world-class surfers travel to the journalist dead zone of New Guinea in search of undiscovered waves and end up finding more than they bargained for. Director Justin LePera and Producer Geoff Clark in attendance on July 19 at 7:30pm —with— Water Warriors Directed by Anna Jerstrom. USA, 2012, 6 mins In their hunt for the next wave, these girls charge the break like Amazons going to battle.
Waverider Director: Karl Lear. USA, 2012, 60 mins. July 17 at 7:30pm; July 20 at 1pm In June 2012, a Fijian surfer the world had never heard of earned the chance to compete against the best surfer the world has ever seen. This is his story. —with— Doze Director: Maria Eça, Miguel Bretiano and Vasco Crespo A Moldavian teenager discovers surf in Portugal.
Hangs Upon Nothing Director: Jeremy Rumas. US, 2013, 90 mins. July 20 at 7:30pm; July 31 at 1pm This highly anticipated surf odyssey follows Chuck Corbett, a surfer who, at the age of 18, left everything behind to surf the remote atolls of Kiribati. Live narration and performance by director Jeremy Rumas on July 20 at 7:30pm.
Raw: The Movie Director: Cohan Banfield and Mark Brightwell. Australia, 2012, 54 mins. July 23 at 1pm; Aug 1 at 7:30pm Top surfers explore awesome waves in this fusion of epic surf, stunning cinematography and amping sounds. —with— Onde Nostre Director: Luca Merli + Matteo Ferrari. Italy, 2011, 30 mins. Hawai‘i premiere. See the Italian version of a surf road trip.
Gun Ho Director: Bud Browne. USA, 1963, TK mins July 28 at 1 + 7:30pm This classic from surf-film pioneer Bud Browne includes helicopter shots of Waimea Bay, Pipe Master Butch Van Artsdalen, and a tandem surf contest at Huntington Beach.
Closing-night reception Enjoy a live performance by Mano Kane, plus food, beer and wine for purchase. 6-7:30pm. • $15, $12 MM. Bud Browne’s classic Gun Ho screens at 7:30pm. Screening is followed by a panel discussion with Hawai‘i surf luminaries Peter Cole, Ricky Grigg, and Kimo Hollinger.
Ticket prices: Regular screenings: $10, $8 museum members Opening and closing Nights: $15, $12 museum members Flash passes: : $90, $72 (includes 10 screenings, excluding the opening- and closing-night receptions)
About the Honolulu Museum of Art
One of the world’s premier art museums presents international caliber special exhibitions and features a collection that includes Hokusai, van Gogh, Gauguin, Monet, Picasso and Warhol, as well as traditional Asian and Hawaiian art. Located in two of Honolulu’s most beautiful buildings, visitors enjoy two cafés and gardens, alongside films and concerts located at the theater. In 2011, The Contemporary Museum gifted its assets and collection to the Honolulu Academy of Arts and in 2012, the combined museum changed its name to the Honolulu Museum of Art.
Locations: Honolulu Museum of Art: 900 S. Beretania Street Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House: 2411 Makiki Heights Drive Honolulu Museum of Art School: 1111 Victoria Street
Honolulu Museum of Art at First Hawaiian Center: 9999 Bishop Street
Honolulu Museum of Art Doris Duke Theatre: 901 Kinau Street (at rear of museum)