Making the Grades
I screened Endless Summer with a friend, who kept saying, "Where's the plot?" Don't expect one. This movie is about surfing, and nothing more. Wave after wave, board after board, beach after beach. If you don't like surfing, there isn't much here for you. I had expected a movie that had more shots of girls than surfers. To the filmmakers' credit, there isn't even much here in the way of beach scenery, although what is included may cause concern.
The movie follows two guys that would rather surf than eat. They go around the world on $7,000 (sure...) and check out one surf spot after the next. One stop is in France, where a couple of brief beach shots includes some topless nudity, while another beach scene has a girl in one of those very uncomfortable looking bikinis. In addition, the language uses terms that are not the usual sexual expletives, but may still be of concern.
Endless Summer is probably best classified as a documentary, although there are some dramatized scenes. Even though I don't know a thing about surfing, I would have probably found it more interesting if they had explained a few things. There's a lot of talk about short boards, long boards and a few other boards, but the narrator never really explains the advantages or differences between them. In some scenes, I also found the movie condescending to the people in the countries they visited. These two guys only have surfing on the mind, and have no time for the problems they may encounter in a Third World nation.
If you love water and surf boards, you may want to give this movie a ride. Technically, the film is superb, with fantastic surfing shots that seem almost impossible to capture. But overall the movie needs more information, leaving Endless Summer as the perfect definition of the "long bored."