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2023 TISFF:

Second Edition


The Pandemic

During our 2020 festival's opening night on March 13th, the Costa Rican Ministry of Health abruptly canceled the Tamarindo International Surf Film Festival due to the escalating COVID-19 pandemic. This decision disrupted the arrival of esteemed guests like Chris Bertish, compelling us to swiftly dismantle the event and assist stranded visitors until their safe departure. Tamarindo, nestled within Las Baulas National Park, faced the immediate economic fallout as a tourism-driven locale. The abrupt closure left businesses unprepared, employees unsupported, and families struggling.

  • Starring: CJ Hobgood and Damien Hobgood

    Feature Film: 105 minutes

    Critically acclaimed tale of two of the most iconic surfers of the professional era – identical twins CJ and Damien Hobgood. Their intense sibling rivalry drove them to numerous event victories and a world crown, yet ultimately ripped their personal and peripheral relationships apart.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Justin Purser

  • Starring: Kassia Meador, Lola Mignot, Leah Dawson

    Short Film: 16 minutes

    In the summer of 2018, The Inertia traveled to El Salvador with Kassia Meador, Leah Dawson, and Lola Mignot, three outstanding women who are inspiring the next genera- tion of ocean lovers through their alternati- ve approach to both surfing and life. Each has developed a strong voice as a leader in surfing, and managed to do so on her own terms. They ride the boards they want, spearhead projects that speak to their passions, and keep their eyes peeled for interesting ways to engage that fascinating nexus where surfing and the rest of the world collide.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Zack Weisberg

  • Starring: John Becker

    Animation Film: 2 minutes

    This short animated film features hundreds of skateboards, snowboards and surfboards choreographed at 24 boards per second, creating an ebullient montage of flickering images illustrating the history of board making.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Patrick Smith

  • Starring: Tom Wegener and Takuya Tsutsumi

    Short Documentary: 14 minutes

    Beyond Tradition is a short documentary film about the Urushi Alaia Project. Takyua Tsutsumi of Tsutsumi Asakichi Urushi, and Producer/Director Shin Aoki journey to Australia to create a symbolic surfboard production using natural materials from Koyoto, Japan… with respect and appreciation for surfing and nature.


    A collection of surfing enthusiasts from Japan, Australia and North America worked together, bringing their passion and hopeful wish to pass along a beautiful planet, sustainable environment and a responsible society to the next generation.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Shin Aoki

  • Feature Film: 35 minutes

    In this much anticipated, thought-provoking documentary, Argentinian brothers Julian and Joaquin Azulay, (Gauchos del Mar) go searching for waves in the Falkland Islands. They discover epic, empty, hard worn waves in a beautiful and bleak landscape, where the scars of war are still visible in the minefields and in society. They hope to make new friends and share waves – but can the shadow of the conflict be overcome?

    Producer/Filmmaker: Julian, Joaquin Azulay and Fernando Salem

  • Starring: John Becker

    Documentary Short Film: 6 minutes

    “Man vs. Crocodile” is the story of surfer John Becker, who survived a tragic crocodile attack while crossing the body of water between Playa Grande and Tamarindo, Costa Rica.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Drew Petrimoulx

  • Starring: Chris Bertish

    Feature Film: 55 minutes

    Ocean Driven chronicles South African Chris Bertish’s development into a fearless and highly skilled waterman. The film features authentic footage of the growth, struggles, and unique environments that have shaped this supernatural ocean pioneer.

    In 2010, minutes after nearly drowning, Bertish won the Mavericks Big Wave Invitational in the largest waves in competition history. Legendary surfers and ocean specialists were interviewed for the film, which features footage from Bertish’s global odyssey, leading to the record-setting Mavericks competition and beyond. The film has a far-reaching appeal to surfers and non-surfers alike, as a gripping escape that redefines the possible.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Nadia Tarlow

  • Starring: Stephanie Gilmore, Ryan Burch, Greed McTaggart, Ellis Ericson

    Feature Film: 60 minutes

    An inspiring exploration of how a small corner of California has produced some of the world’s most talented surfers and innovators. Combining incredible archival footage and thoughtful interviews, this award winning documentary chronicles the craftsmanship, work ethic, renegades, and traditions that forge the notion of craft, heritage, and place.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Wyatt Daily & Justin Misch

  • Animation Short: 2 minutes

    “A modern-day surf film”.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Nicole Tobin (Israel)

  • Short Film: 3 minutes

    The Encyclopedia of Surfing, brings us an incredibly fun little video of the surf world before the leash, when surfboards roamed free.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Matt Warshaw

  • Starring: David Rastovich, Ryan Burch, Derrick Disney, Bryce Young, Justin Adams, Robin Kegel, Alex Knost, Derek Hynd, Ari Bowne, Rob Machado, Gavin Beschen, Ozzi Wright, Rangi Ormond, Erick Snortum, Andy Nieblas

    Feature Film: 42 minutes

    A fully independently funded project that director Jack Coleman shot over a three year time period throughout Australia, Indonesia, Morocco, Mexico, New Zealand, Hawaii, Fiji, Spain, and California with a cast of surfers in tow.


    The name of the film is based on the concept of being completely in the present moment, which is one of the reasons why the sport of surfing is so addictive; being totally in the present moment it is called “being in the ZONE”. The synergy between the zone and the force of the ocean creates a frequency in which we resonate. Frequencies are energy - and energy is what we are all made out of – that is why we are connected to every living thing and to each other.

    Producer/Filmmaker: Jack Coleman

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