- 1 hr 44 min
Riding Giants is a documentary film about competitive surfing. The film is the creation of Stacy Peralta who is a world-renown skateboarding and surfer. He directs and narrates the film. The film starts with the historical background of surfing, from the island of Hawaii. There is a segment of competitive surfing that is called Big Wave Surfing. Surfers who compete in these events face waves that are seventy feet or higher. The documentary begins with events in the 1950’s when surfing first became a prominent sport in Waimea Bay. The film also discusses the technology behind surfing. Surfboards begin to be designed to be more lightweight and the film traces how these advances help the sport grow and surfers improve. There are three famous surfers that the film focuses on: Greg Noll, Laird Hamilton, and Jeff Clark. Greg Noll is famous for being one of the first professional surfers out there who helped found the sport during the 1950’s. Laird Hamilton is one of the first celebrity surfers who received fame and endorsement deals from a variety of different companies and Jeff Clark who was also a surfing icon. Clark is the man responsible for discovering Mavericks, which is a notoriously challenging spot for big wave surfers. The film interviews all three men and they talk about their love of the sport and where they see surfing going in the future. The film also goes beyond just the sport of surfing and really gets into the culture and community that arose around the sport. It shows how surfing grew from just a sport for perceived slackers into the major industry it is today. Surfing has become a big business and many surfers have been able to build successful careers and profit from their athletic abilities. Others are upset that the sport has become so mainstream. The film shows this dichotomy and how it has affected big wave surfing.