New Directors | New Films

Surfing by day, films at night – if that sounds like your ideal lifestyle, you've come to the right place: Surf Pro Espinho is back in town for its 2017 edition, teaming up with FEST for a collaboration that is sure to make waves!

 Organised by Espinho Surfing Destination, Surf Pro Espinho aims to popularise the sport as well as firmly place the city on the surfing world map, bringing the most promising surfing champions to these shores. The event is structured into three competitions – the male, female and junior pro championship – and will award male and female winners equally, a fact that makes it a pioneer amongst sporting events: the only other tournament to do so is Wimbledon.

 So that's the surfing covered, I hear you say, but what about the films? Whether you're taking a break from the waves or prefer to enjoy sports on screen from the comfort of your sofa, FEST has got your back, bringing a selection of surf movies directly to the beach. It hardly gets more immersive than this!

Over the course of four sessions, our programme of films takes you surfing USA... and beyond. Hailing from Australia, The Man And The Sea is a short but lyrical reflection on the lifestyle and philosophy behind surfing, drifting away from the big waves and focusing instead of feeling at one with nature and connecting with fellow beings. Similarly, “Bruce Gold – Last of the Great Surfing Hippies” talks of the freedom of choosing surf as the only constant in life, with ageing surfing legend Bruce Gold endearingly noting that “it's tough being a hobo, but it sure has its rewards”.

In general, the films from FEST Surf go beyond common perceptions, adding a layer of profoundness to a sport that is often perceived as carefree. This is true of “The Fisherman's Son: focusing on the relationship between a Chilean father and son, it chronicles the powerful relationship between the two, as well as their deep connection to the sea. It's a link that is physical as well as emotional, as the two bonded over fishing as well as diving and surfing.

Similarly, in her sequel to the 2009 film, Heather Hudson's “The Women and the Waves 2” portrays the unique aspects of being a female surfer. While her first documentary was a celebration of surfer girls, this one has a more introspective tone, focusing on the network of friendships and support that develop among the waves.

So, whether you're the king of the longboard or a proud couch potato, come meet us at the beach and get ready to be swept away!

Chiara Puntil