Step Into Liquid

Rated 4.0 “No special effects. No stuntmen. No stereotypes.” Dana Brown’s sensual, sensational surfing documentary tells us right up front that what we are about to experience is not only amazing but also very, very real. The film paddles and slings us through a global milieu of “boards, wax and wetsuits,” in which tribes of wave worshippers feed off the energy of the sea and nurture a Zen-like “stoke” or passion for riding frothy crests of apparently all sizes and forms. Brown’s narration is as nakedly reverential, repetitive and thin as a late-night infomercial at times, which eventually makes the film feel a bit overly long. But this does not override the fun, beauty and exhilarating rushes unleashed here as we brush up against the current state of the art and practitioners of both recreational and professional surfing. The film’s locales include Rapa Nui, Vietnam, Ireland, Lake Michigan, a Texas shipping channel and 60-foot swells 100 miles off the coast of San Diego.