The 9th Wavescape Surf Film Festival at DIFF celebrates almost a decade of bringing Durban an annual feast of surf culture, spearheaded by the world’s best surfing documentaries and shorts.
The outdoor screening on the lawns at the Bay of Plenty takes place this Sunday 20 July followed by five days of indoor screenings at Ster Kinekor Musgrave (Monday 21 to 26 July).
“Our 2014 edition features the most diverse and geographically disparate collection yet,” said Steve Pike (Spike) co-founder of the festival and editor of wavescape.co.za, who will be introducing the films.
“We have a whopping lineup of 19 films, comprising 13 features and six shorts. Of particular interest to our audience are three documentaries featuring pioneering journeys into the wave-rich but unknown wildernesses of Alaska, Russia and Patagonia. Surfers have always enjoyed the spirit of exploration and these should sate that wanderlust.”
Wavescape this year also offered subject matter ranging from gay surfing to extreme ski BASE jumping. Out in the Lineup chronicles the story of gay surfers in the US and Australia who challenge the establishment while travelling the surfing world to hear stories of transformation and hope.
The story of Shane McConkey, in the film simply entitled McConkey, chronicles the tragically heroic story of the American ski icon who evolved BASE jumping to a thrilling new level when he mixed skiing, BASE and wingsuit flying into a heady, hi-octane mix of adrenaline and acute danger.
“Geographically, the 2014 edition of Wavescape covers just about every corner of the surfing universe, with films also shot in Angola, Namibia, Mozambique, Indonesia, Spain, Portugal, Australia, New Zealand, USA, South Africa and Chile.”
“We have a strong feature documentary component, with a smattering of pure surf movies that feature cutting edge cinematic techniques, huge boosts in surfing moves and the hottest new soundtracks. These include Jordy Smith’s film Now Now, and Taylor Steele’s movie Innersection Black.”
Several films focused on women surfing, including South African professional surfer Bianca Buitendag in Disguised in Nature; world champion Stephanie Gilmore in Stephanie in the Water; and 3 Killas y un kiwi – a fascinating look at Latino professionals (and one Kiwi) from South America, Spike said.
There’s also Tide Lines, about a crew of South African surfers who sail the world collecting garbage, visiting the famous garbage gyre of the Pacific Ocean to highlight the need to conserve our oceans. The Old, the Young and the Sea covers the famous surfing routes of Europe in an eclectic mix of culture, kombis and crisp cold perfection.
“We even have a documentary about alternative rock band Switchfoot, who surf and play gigs on their 2012 world tour to Australia, New Zealand, Africa and Bali,” Spike said.
See you at the movies!
Wavescape films free at the beach, R35 at Musgrave. More information and schedules at www.wavescapefestival.com