Just got through watching “Surf’s Up!” yesterday evening. For the seventh time! Yeah, well, I just love this movie!
I hadn’t seen it in quiet a while. And it got me thinking: is it possible that we have forgotten the reason why we first tried surfing (or anyother action water sport for that matter) was simply to just have fun?
If you guys recall, and for those who have not seen it yet (spoiler alert!),the movie highlights the protaganist’s journey, Cody Maverick, from Shiverpool, Antarctica to Pen Gu Island, his mis-adventures competing at the Big Z Memorial Surf Off, aided by his mentor, Geek, who later turns out to be life-long hero and legendary surfer Big Zeke Topanga.
Along the way, he meets Big Z’s nemesis, Tank “The Shredder” Evans. Through out a Cody’s adventure in Pen Gu Island, he is assisted by his trusty, forever-stoked friend, Chicken Joe, from Sheboigan, Michigan, and Lani, Zeke’s fiesty and lovable niece.
Big Z and Cody learn the importance of virtues like respect, perseverance and accountability.
The animation is incredible and the surfing scenes are spot on. The movie even has vignettes of Kelly Slater and Rob Machado, each with their respective penguin counterparts.
The documentary format in which the movie is filmed is also pretty awesome.
But for me, honestly, it is that feeling of loss and re-discovery, portrayed by Big Z’s story, of how fun a certain activity can be, and how easy it can be to loose touch with the things that really matter:
“I got lost…but with this kid’s help here, I found my way back”.
No competitions. No sponsorships or big name contracts. Just loving the ocean and the sport he had loved and lost for so long.
I think this is one of the strongest messages from the movie. One memorable scene says it all. It only lasts a few seconds:
Big Z, Cody and Lani are lying on their surfboards, resting after a long, fun-stoked session. It is almost sunset and the whole ocean is tinged with reds, oranges and pastel pinks (again, the scenes are visually stunning). Big Z turns to Lani and Cody, and simply says:
“This is what it’s all about”.
Yes Big Z. Absolutely on board with you. Good friends. Good waves. Good times. This IS what it really is all about.
Please check out the movie if you still haven’t. It’s a regular on Netflix. Or better yet, buy it on DVD here (Disclaimer: if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission from Amazon. This commission comes at no additional cost to you), and add it to your classics collection.
Watch it whenever you have land-lock blues, or just want to have a laid-back experience, watching a great movie and just having fun. That’s what it’s all about!