A Life of Endless Summers: The Bruce Brown Story

 

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The surf’s up on the swell legend who made some serious waves. 

 
Life of Endless Summers

 

Sports documentaries are fundamentally tied to film history, beginning in 1897 with Enoch J. Rector’s The Corbett-Fitzsimmons Fight. With a running time of over 90 minutes, it holds the distinction of being the first known feature-length film, as well as the first shot in widescreen. Depicting a moment in time, sports documentaries function as historical record keepers and true time-capsules of popular culture. Their call to adventure ignites a desire for conquest and achievement. Among the best examples are the films of Bruce Brown.

 

The documentarian Bruce Brown is synonymous with surf culture. Throughout the late 50s and early 60s, he captured the rise of surfing with sport films such as Slippery When Wet, Surf Crazy and Barefoot Adventure. In 1966, he made waves across America with his essential surf classic The Endless Summer. Anchored on the premise that with enough time and dough, surfers could follow summer around the globe, in search of the perfect wave. Beach boys Mike Hynson and Robert August do just that, paddling through exotic locales such as Australia, New Zealand, Tahiti, Hawaii, Ghana and South Africa. Set to the iconic score of The Sandals, Brown narrates the journey from start to finish, inspiring other soul surfers to set their own footprints in the sand. Following his surf success, Brown did the same for motorcycles in On Any Sunday with Steve McQueen. In A Life of Endless Summers: The Bruce Brown Story, son Dana Brown captures his father’s story with the same playful charm.

 

Documenting his first road trip since the passing of his beloved wife, A Life of Endless Summers: The Bruce Brown Story follows Bruce as he retraces his career through the people and places that helped shape it. What emerges is the story of a life well-lived and the ripples left behind. The innovations made by Brown, Gordon ‘Grubby’ Clark, Hobie Alter and Jack O’Neill are among the forefront developments in action sports. With a relaxed home movie feel, ground-breaking figures of cult sports are revealed through casual, touching reunions. The work serves as an invitation to continued adventure and to making the most of life to the last. “But for now, the endless summer must end. This is Bruce Brown. Thank you for watching. I hope you enjoyed my film.”     

 

CHAD KENNERK

 

Featuring  Bruce Brown, Dana Brown, Mert Lawwill, Chad McQueen, Steve McQueen, R. Paul Allen, Jack O’Neill, Robert August, Mike Hynson.

 

Dir Dana Brown, Pro Mike Slattery, Screenplay Dana Brown, Music The Sandals.

 

1091 Media.

88 mins. USA. 2020. Rel: 25 August 2020. Available on Amazon Prime. Cert. 15.