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Ride the wave of adrenaline with films where surf is the turf and every break is breathtaking.

From heart-stopping wipeouts to soul-soothing rides, these titles promise a plunge into the very essence of what it means to live for surfing.

Stoked to hang ten through the best surfing movies, shows, and documentaries ever made?

Best Surfing Movies, Shows, and Documentaries:

  1. Point Break (1991)
  2. The Endless Summer (1966) – Documentary
  3. Blue Crush (2002)
  4. Riding Giants (2004) – Documentary
  5. Soul Surfer (2011)
  6. Big Wednesday (1978)
  7. Step Into Liquid (2003) – Documentary
  8. The Endless Summer II (1994) – Documentary
  9. Chasing Mavericks (2012)
  10. Surf’s Up (2007) – Animated
  11. North Shore (1987)

#1 Point Break (1991)

  • 🎬 Directed by: Kathryn Bigelow
  • 🌟 Starring: Keanu Reeves, Patrick Swayze, Gary Busey, Lori Petty

In Point Break, FBI agent Johnny Utah (Keanu Reeves) infiltrates a group of surfers suspected of being bank robbers led by the charismatic Bodhi (Patrick Swayze).

Packed with action sequences and surfing scenes, this cult classic explores themes of friendship, adrenaline, and the limits one will go for the ultimate thrill.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, Vudu

#2 The Endless Summer (1966) – Documentary

  • 🎬 Directed by: Bruce Brown

The Endless Summer is a documentary that follows two surfers, Mike Hynson and Robert August, on a round-the-world surfing adventure.

Directed by Bruce Brown, this iconic film captures the essence of the surfing lifestyle and the pursuit of the perfect wave. Its influence on both surfing culture and the documentary genre is profound and lasting.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, Vudu

#3 Blue Crush (2002)

  • 🎬 Directed by: John Stockwell
  • 🌟 Starring: Kate Bosworth, Michelle Rodriguez, Matthew Davis, Sanoe Lake

Blue Crush is a sports film that centers on Anne Marie (Kate Bosworth), a young surfer preparing for the Pipe Masters competition in Hawaii.

Balancing her dreams, romance, and the pressures of supporting her family, Anne Marie must overcome her fears to chase the championship. The film is renowned for spotlighting women in surfing and showcasing thrilling surf scenes.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, Vudu

#4 Riding Giants (2004) – Documentary

  • 🎬 Directed by: Stacy Peralta

Riding Giants is a documentary directed by Stacy Peralta that delves into the history of big-wave surfing. Featuring pioneering legends like Laird Hamilton, Greg Noll, and Jeff Clark, the film traces the evolution of the sport and the daredevil surfers who challenge monstrous waves.

Riding Giants is both an homage and an adrenaline-fueled exploration of surfing’s most audacious discipline.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV

#5 Soul Surfer (2011)

  • 🎬 Directed by: Sean McNamara
  • 🌟 Starring: AnnaSophia Robb, Helen Hunt, Dennis Quaid, Carrie Underwood

Soul Surfer tells the true story of Bethany Hamilton (AnnaSophia Robb), a teenage surfer who lost her arm in a shark attack but persevered to pursue her dream of professional surfing.

This inspirational film follows her journey of recovery, her steadfast faith, and the unyielding determination that led her back to competitive surfing.

Where to watch: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV

#6 Big Wednesday (1978)

  • 🎬 Directed by: John Milius
  • 🌟 Starring: Jan-Michael Vincent, William Katt, Gary Busey

Big Wednesday is a classic surf film that follows the lives of three California surfersβ€”Matt, Jack, and Leroyβ€”over twelve years.

Directed by John Milius and set against the backdrop of the 1960s and ’70s, the movie chronicles their friendships, the Vietnam War’s impact, and their shared passion for surfing. It culminates in the epic surf session of “Big Wednesday,” a day when the greatest waves hit the coast.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV

#7 Step Into Liquid (2003) – Documentary

  • 🎬 Directed by: Dana Brown

Step Into Liquid, directed by Dana Brown, is a documentary that examines the diverse world of surfing, capturing the sport’s beauty and the people who find solace and excitement in the waves.

With breathtaking cinematography from various surf locations around the world, this film offers a look at the connection between humanity and the ocean through the lens of surf culture.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV

#8 The Endless Summer II (1994) – Documentary

  • 🎬 Directed by: Bruce Brown

The Endless Summer II is the sequel to the original groundbreaking surfing documentary. Directed by Bruce Brown, the film follows surfers Pat O’Connell and Robert “Wingnut” Weaver as they revisit the sites of the original journey and explore new territories.

Their adventure embodies the eternal search for the perfect wave in the ever-evolving world of surfing.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV

#9 Chasing Mavericks (2012)

  • 🎬 Directed by: Curtis Hanson and Michael Apted
  • 🌟 Starring: Jonny Weston, Gerard Butler, Elisabeth Shue, Abigail Spencer

Chasing Mavericks is based on the true story of surfing prodigy Jay Moriarity (Jonny Weston) and his quest to ride the legendary Mavericks waves in California.

Under the guidance of veteran surfer Frosty Hesson (Gerard Butler), Jay prepares both physically and mentally to face some of the most dangerous waves on Earth. It’s a tale of ambition, mentorship, and the transformative power of surfing.

Where to watch: Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, Vudu

#10 Surf’s Up (2007) – Animated

  • 🎬 Directed by: Ash Brannon and Chris Buck
  • 🌟 Starring: Voices of Shia LaBeouf, Jeff Bridges, Zooey Deschanel, James Woods

Surf’s Up is an animated mockumentary about a teenage penguin named Cody Maverick (voiced by Shia LaBeouf) who dreams of becoming a professional surfer.

The film parodies documentaries as it humorously chronicles Cody’s journey to an epic surf competition. With its unique style and lovable characters, Surf’s Up offers a delightful take on surfing culture that appeals to audiences of all ages.

Where to watch: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Vudu

#11 North Shore (1987)

  • 🎬 Directed by: William Phelps
  • 🌟 Starring: Matt Adler, Nia Peeples, Gerry Lopez, Laird Hamilton

North Shore follows the story of a young surfer from Arizona, Rick Kane (Matt Adler), who wins a wave pool competition and uses the prize money to travel to Hawaii to experience real wave surfing.

Upon arrival, he’s confronted with the harsh realities and localism of the North Shore surf scene. As Rick learns the ropes from surfing legends, he adapts to the local culture and becomes a respected surfer. The film is a coming-of-age story that weaves surfing into a tale of personal growth and belonging.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV

FAQ

What is the best surfing movie of all time?

“The Endless Summer” (1966) is the best surfing movie of all time, capturing the spirit of surfing culture and the pursuit of the perfect wave.

What are some good surfing movies?

“Point Break” (1991), “Blue Crush” (2002), and “Lords of Dogtown” (2005) are good surfing movies that offer a mix of action, drama, and sports excitement.

What surfing movies, shows, and documentaries are on Netflix?

The best surfing movies, shows, and documentaries on Netflix currently are “Resurface” (2017), “Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable” (2019), and the series “100 Foot Wave” (2021).

Meet Rev, one of our dedicated team members who embodies the essence of sports passion. When he’s not immersed in the world of sports content creation, Rev is busy honing his skills in esports and exploring the great outdoors through activities like hiking and basketball.

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