Films and Documentaries to watch out for
Fespaco in Burkina Fasso and Durban International Film Festival are two of our continents biggest and best film festivals, DIFF boasting over 250 screenings in 11 venues across the city. A mass of the best of contemporary cinema from around the world, 72 feature films, 48 documentaries and 45 short films- it’s ever film buffs mecca.
A while back we attended Wild Talk Africa, the wildlife branch of DIFF, and were lucky enough to get exposed to some of these new exiting, up and coming films and documentaries. (picture is a blurry dark one of mike in the documentary version of Dragons Den-you can see the scary panel in the background)
All the films I have listed have been receiving praise, awards and interest both locally and internationally, and as I work in the ocean, environmental side of life, they follow suite with the same theme. I have not seen all of them, but am working off the awards, trailers and buzz from the net and others. And based on that am also now hunting down copies of as many as I can find to watch. Some are even educational, uplifting and motivational- so really you are only adding value to your life by grabbing a box of popcorn, a significant other or others, snuggling down and getting you outdoor, ocean fix while we wait for summer to hit with full force. As there were so many to choose from I am splitting up the video posts, so tomorrow I will be looking at films from Wild Talk and a local film festival in Hermanus, 40 Fathoms.
Touching the Dragon:
Directors: Foster Brothers
If you were at TEDxSeaPoint last year you would have got a sneaky preview of this amazing movie. Accomplished nature documentarian and underwater cinematographer Roger Horrocks heard legends of men supposedly ‘calling’ wild crocodiles out of the river and a crocodile shaman who can swim and ride on the back of a giant crocodile without being eaten, and though the stories sound unlikely, he believes that he too has experienced first-hand the ways in which these ancient reptiles are possible of showing emotion. Feeling a deep connection to crocodiles, he is compelled to investigate these stories further, in the hope of meeting ‘Chito’, the crocodile shaman. This documentary stands as a precious record of a unique moment in the connection between human and nature.
Wavescape is partner event with DIFF, with a more ocean and surfing focus. Always a wonderful event to attend, weather permitting, they often host the screenings on the beach in Durban, attracting many of the surfing community around SA. The also have screenings of the movies in Cape Town in December-so watch their website for dates and times.
Bending Colors (Jordy Smith)
Director: Kai Neville
Chronicles the rise of South Africa's prodigal son who goes from teen sensation to world super star. In signature Kai Neville style, Bending Colors threads serious surf action with vibrant creative flair and a solid soundtrack. We watch him go from teen sensation to world superstar through interview and archival footage. This won best cinematography at Wavescape.
North of the Sun
Directors: Inge Wegge, Jørn Nyseth Ranum
Norwegian with English subtitles
Inge and Jørn spent nine months of cold, Norwegian winter in the isolated and uninhabited bay of a remote, arctic island by the coast of Northern-Norway, facing nothing but the vast Atlantic Ocean. There they built a cabin out of driftwood and other cast-off materials that washed up on shore, and ate expired food the stores would otherwise have thrown away. But the boys brought with them two items of utmost importance: Their surfboards - perhaps their biggest motivation for the arctic adventure. Because the remote bay holds a well kept secret; some of the worlds finest surfing waves…
Here and Now
Directors: Nathan Myers, Taylor Steele
This film was shot around the world in one day. More than 25 filmmakers and surfers worked in unison to document the world of surfing in a single 24-hour period. It covers the gamut of surfing, shapers, photographers, surfing legends young and old, third world and first, beginners- you name it. I am a big fan of Taylor Steels movie Sipping Jetstreams, get hold of this if you don’t already know about it.
Water From the Moon
Director Arya Subyakto.
Deep within Indonesia, far from the open coast, lies one of the most interesting waves known to humankind. Indonesia is famed for its beautiful waves and blue surfing waters, but deep inland is the tidal wave “Bono” breaking in the Kampar River in Sumatra, Indonesia. Producing faces up to 10 feet and offering a ride of several minutes, this wave can travel up to 50 kilometers. You might have noticed it on an advert recently. Well this is not the advert, this is a really wonderful story and well worth watching.
Dark Side of the lens
Director: Mickey Smith
A firm favorite short film for cinematographers, directors and surfers alike. Smith gives us a glimpse inside his mind. He shows us with these beautiful moving pictures why he spends countless hours fighting off hypothermia, nursing injuries and braving heavy swell.