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Are you a surfer, a filmmaker, a storyteller, an ocean-lover? We'd love to hear from you.

Santa Cruz, CA
United States

2019 Schedule + Tickets



All Screenings At the Rio theatre, 1205 soquel ave, santa Cruz

Every Ticket gives you a chance to win goods from our awesome sponsors -                      INCLUDING A YETI hard Cooler at every screening!

General: $18 / Groms 12 & under: $11 / All-screening pass: $54

(ticket prices include all fees including 5% admission tax)

FRIDAY EARLY: 6:30 - 8:15 PM


Director: Rick Wall
Running time: 53 mins

The feeling of opening yourself up to the ocean is one of both beauty and fear. In that moment ‘satori’ is reached, a feeling of instant awakening. Satori is ‘a glimpse of truth’ or a sudden moment of awakening. To have the confidence to overcome your fears and unlock your passions you need to be completely present.

This cinematic film documents a group of close-knit big wave surfers who have dedicated their lives to the ocean and riding the huge waves at the infamous Dungeons and at Sunset Reef off the shores of picturesque Cape Town, South Africa. While each surfer is surfing these waves for different reasons, the film discovers that there is a connection that they all feel and believe in --the raw beauty of the ocean beneath them.


Director: Donggi Kim
Running time: 17 mins
We believe everyone has passion. But people tend to lose their passion as they get older or try to forget about it because their lives get busy.
is not a film about surfing mania, but about people who live with passion. What word can possibly describe those who surf at -15°C and in harsh weather conditions? With this film, director Donggi Kim (whose first film The Winter Surf played at SCSFF in to wake up the passion inside you.

Director: Arthur Neumeier
Running time: 9 mins
Frank Solomon, a big wave surfer and marine activist from Cape Town South Africa, travels to meet two exceptional men, Thabo and Mokete, who indirectly serve the environment through recycling as a means of income. This is the untold story of new friendships, shared experiences and common interest between individuals who live worlds apart.

FRIDAY late: 9:00-11:00 PM

FEATURE: TRANSCENDING WAVES (in Spanish: La Ola Sin Fronteras)

Director: Joaquin Azulay
Running time: 1 hour 14 mins

The Gauchos del Mar brothers (2014 SCSFF Winner Best Feature for Tierra de Patagones) return with an epic exploration of the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), a 700 hundred-island archipelago off the southern tip of Argentina. The brothers set out to this conflicted land, aiming to unite and construct bridges through surfing and the ocean. Their 50-day expedition immerses them in the islands´ culture and troubled history, while searching for waves on foot, in a 4×4 truck, on inter-island planes and aboard a sailboat. They manage to explore uninhabited islands through constantly adverse weather, but discover surprises in the natural beauty of the surrounding coastlines, landscapes and local fauna and also in their interactions with the residents. [note: In Spanish with English Subtitles]


Director: Kyle Buthman
Running time: 17 mins
The latest film from director Kyle Buthman (2015 Winner Audience Favorite Short for Brainwork: Anthony Tashnick). This is the story of 4 friends, (Austin Smith-Ford, Kyle Buthman, Tessa Timmons, and Melissa Sweeney) setting out on a classic road trip, from the desserts of Baja California, to the rainforests of southern Oaxaca. The idea was to camp out and wait for every worthwhile wave to turn on, before moving to the next. 174 days // 10,000 Miles // A journey through Mexico!

SATURDAY EARLY: 6:30 - 8:30 PM


Directors: Wyatt Daily
Running time: 1 hour

“Spoons: A Santa Barbara Story” looks at how two innovators in surfing, Renny Yater and George Greenough, created surfboards to suit their specific approach to one of the best waves on earth: Rincon. Their work became a precursor to much of what surfing is today.

The filmmakers painstakingly tracked down and remastered footage from long-lost dusty archives, to bring a new perspective to one of the most crucial periods in surfing’s evolution. This is a film compiled of never-before-seen footage from surfing’s Golden Age, with outtakes and extras from some of surfing’s most well known filmmakers to tell a history that has never been told before. [note: film contains one instance of swearing]


Director: Zach Weisberg
Running time: 17 mins
In Summer of 2018, The Inertia traveled to El Salvador with Kassia Meador, Leah Dawson, and Lola Mignot, three outstanding women who are inspiring the next generation of ocean lovers through their alternative approach to both surfing and life. Each has developed a strong voice as a leader in surfing, and managed to do so on her own terms. They ride the boards they want, spearhead projects that speak to their passions, and keep their eyes peeled for interesting ways to engage that fascinating nexus where surfing and the rest of the world collide.

Director: Corey McLean
Running time: 14 mins
With the opening of the border in 2016 by US President Barack Obama, Cuba became ground zero for radical change. In a country often defined by oppression, the sport of surfing was illegal until recently. For the hundred or so surfers there, one thing draws them to the water: freedom. This story explores how surfing transformed the lives of Frank and Yaya, the sport's biggest champions in Cuba, and what it means to pursue one's passion against all odds. [note: in Spanish with English subtitles]

SATURDAY late: 9:00-11:00 PM



Director: Andrew Kaineder
Running time: 38 mins

Distracted by realities of our own invention, the natural world becomes invisible, technology is our king. As the cracks in our society spread, two surfers seek refuge in the vastness of the ocean, away from the deafening clamour of humankind. Unchained and dangerously close to freedom. 

A stunningly beautiful and dark vision from director Andrew Kaineder (2018 Winner SCSFF Viewers’ Choice Short for Risky Ripples), featuring the surfing of Harrison Roach and Noah Lane. Beyond the Noise won the Best Cinematography award at both the 2019 Bells Beach Surf Film Festival and the 2018 London Surf Film Festival.


(Some French and German with English subtitles)
Director: Brent Storm
Running time: 1 hour 4 mins

A parallel story from the big wave surfers and photographers who witnessed the largest surf ever seen. This story is based on one photographer's journey to capture the wave of a lifetime. In pursuit, three epic swells hit the South Pacific shorelines, providing conditions only madmen could dream of. Hear the story behind these historical days from the men themselves who dared to challenge the 'White Rhino'. Featuring surfers Kalani Chapman, Mark Healey, Bruce Irons, Nathan Fletcher, Dave Wassel, Kohl Christensen and Kai-Borg Garcia. [note: film contains some swearing]

Refunds may be issued up to 24 hours before the ticketed event. Four-screening passes are refundable up to (and including) October 10, 2017.