Gauchos del mar 2012
Distributed by Green Planet Films, PO Box 247, Corte Madera, CA 94976-0247; 415-377-5471
Directed by Julian and Joaquin Azulay
DVD, color, 88 min.
Latin Americans, Photography, Surfing, Travel and Tourism
Date Entered: 09/15/2015Reviewed by Linda Frederiksen, Washington State University, Vancouver, WA
When the filmmakers’ father first climbed on a handmade board in 1963, surfing was a little known or practiced sport. Now on the verge of international recognition as a category in the 2020 Summer Olympics, the estimated number of surfers around the world numbers in the tens of millions. Beginning as children, Julian and Joaquin Azulay came to appreciate the technique and lifestyle of surfing.
Now in their mid-twenties, the brothers decide to surf their way around South America. Beginning in Malibu, California, they reach their home in Argentina more than a year later. The nearly 19,000 miles, 403-day journey takes them through 13 countries, including Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, and Chile. Along the way, they camp, meet other surfers, stay with locals, work for enough money to continue the trip, make vehicle repairs, and skateboard when there are no waves. And surf. Partially a travelogue, the film is at its core a surf diary. Expert action shots of the affable brothers riding dramatic waves against beautiful landscapes make up the majority of the film’s content. According to the film’s website, the brothers are currently planning a similar trip around the African continent.
Winner of several surf and skate festival film awards, the film is skillfully photographed and edited. Narration and sound production are also of high quality. General viewers will enjoy the visually pleasing film, although it likely will appeal more compellingly to audiences with knowledge or interest in surfing. An optional purchase for most academic libraries.