North Shore Film Festival Debuts To Large Crowd

The first ever Surf Drive-In Film Festival opened Thursday night under fair skies with well over 100 people in attendance. A "community center meets backyard barbeque" mood was set as Jack Johnson tunes played, rice paper lanterns, and over-stuffed couches lined the front. The crowd, some with lawn chairs and their own food and drink, mingled in and about the Waialua Community center. At 9pm the Hawaiian blessing was given, the room was filled, and the show began.

A second 'North Shore' blessing, when a local boy blew a Heineken bottle instead of a conch shell, an update on the Shark's Cove Mall was given, cast members from the movies were introduced and Festival Director Sherrie Robertson thanked everyone. Lights were then dimmed.

The first film was the fictional Kamea. Only 26 minutes long, Kamea tells about a struggling teenage Hawaiian girl and her mystical connection to surf legend Duke Kahanamoku, as she gains a sense of self worth and pride along the way. Go check this one out, and not just because my son has a bit part in it. This movie links our surfing heritage to our surfing future and was well received.

Speaking of mystical, the world premiere of Bill Ballard's new movie, The Mystic, was the second film shown. This film follows a twelve- pack of top surfers to the world's premiere, and sometimes off the beaten path, locations including Northern Chile, Western Lombok, South Pacific, Southern Australia and Hawaii. The Mystic has no narration, but it speaks volumes through Ballard's use of intense images, contrasting locations, and unique styles of music. The slow motion beginning, especially the over/under floater shot, had peoples jaws on the floor. The most hoots came from the Haleiwa crowd during the Jamie O'Brien section. His backside air drop at huge Pipe is still stuck in my head. Slater's tow-in segment is also top shelf. Some wicked time lapse sequences pulled back angles and unique over/under shots highlight this 40 minute gem. A mystical worldwide surf journey, both geographically and musically.

The last movie of the night was Pororoca: Surfing the Amazon, a top-notch docudrama about the legendary full moon wave that rolls up the rain swollen Amazon. To ride this tidal bore a six-pack of surfers, including Ross Clarke-Jones and Carlos Burle, cut through the jungle, took a long boat ride. After several days they are in the right place at the right time and score 20 minute rides on the world's longest wave. This movie crew did a hell of a job in very challenging conditions.

The four day festival includes some world, U.S. and Hawaii premiers of the newest works to hit the screen as well as some of our sports greatest legends such as Bud and Bruce Browne, Bill Delaney and Greg MacGillivray.

On tap for Sunday:
5:00pm HST – Bonfire Chat
Bonfire Chat with Top International Surf Filmmakers
This event is FREE and open on a first-come/first serve basis.

6:30pm HST – Special Hawaii Premiere Feature Film “Ocean Tribe”

8:30pm HST- Classic Selection
Bruce Brown’s “The Endless Summer”

For more details check