Saturday, February 11, 2023

Wade in the Water: A Journey into Black Surfing and Aquatic Culture (2023) Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2023

This is an excellent took at the Black surfing culture and how, despite many people thinking that people of African descent not having a relationship with the ocean their relationship goes back over 10 centuries 

This film is great on so many different levels. Historically the film opens up so much that most people simply don't know. First we get a history of life on the Atlantic Coast of Africa  where the only way to get around was by swimming or taking a boat. We learn that the first records of surfing was in the 1640's a full 130 years before there were records of any one surfing in the Pacific. The film also gives a clear indication that the late Nick Gabaldon was driving force in the rise of surfing in California simply because he was so good. We also get the story of Tony Corley and The Black Surfers Association. If you are a casual fan of surfing this film will alter how you see the sport.

More importantly the film is a glorious exploration of the  return to the sea of a group of people who once were one with it. 

I loved this film. If I was going to quibble it is that there is still so much to say about this subject that the brief run time is much too short.

Highly recommended

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