Surf Movie Review ‘Strange Rumblings in Shangri La’


The crew travels the globe looking for a mythical surfers paradise.

‘“Strange Rumblings in Shangri La” follows some of the world’s best surfers on a journey that leads them all around the globe to find a surfing paradise.

The film which came out in late last year features amazingly beautiful cinematography, from the frigid waters of Iceland to the tropical beaches of Mozambique, South Africa, and honors the historical explorer Jacques Cousteau following the path of adventure and the unknown.

“The spirit of Jacque Cousteau spoke to us from the picture on the wall,” said the narrator in an opening scene. “You should be going on great adventures, you should be discovering knew locations, you need to find Shangri La.”

The moral of the movie is that Shangri La is everywhere and the good times are in the journey to the destination instead of the destination itself.

The crew visited seven locations throughout the film; the first to the freezing water of Iceland where they are covered head to toe in rubber. The the boys head south to the warmer waters of Brazil to defrost. Their third adventure takes them to Sumatra an island in the western Indonesia, and finally they end in Mozambique.

Along with some of the top surfing in the world, the videography and editing were extremely high quality with impressive scenery shots along with epic waves made for an eye pleasing movie with a narrative that lightened up the mood to show that all surfers love to have fun.

Surfers in the movie include Tasmanian Dion Angus who sports a baldhead and healthy beard the entire time. Transworld surf called Angus the “Lil Wayne” of surfing for his high-level performances as well as loud and flashy personality.

Nate Tyler is a talented surfer from California who has been featured on numerous surfing magazine covers.

Creed Mctaggart is also a standout professional surfer from Western Australia with big wave and small wave prowess.

Damien and C.J. Hobgood are identical twins and have been at surfing’s highest level for over twenty years.

There are also short appearances from Australia’s Noa Deane, and World tour veteran Taj Barrow and South Africa’s own Brandon Gibbons.

The film is a somewhat comical narrative about finding the mythical perfect wave as like many surf films. However, I was surprised to see the variety of soundtracks and surfing.

“Strange Rumblings,” has clips that range anywhere from the big ambient blue slow motion barrels at Greenbush Indonesia to punk rocker fast paced aerial surfing in France and Iceland.

This “feel good” film seems to make fun of many surf movies that narratives often involve looking for surfing salvation via the perfect wave referred in this movie as “Shangri La.”

Dion and crew can be seen in an array of international locations flying through the air, landing impossible airs, getting spit out of barrels and coming out and slashing the lip at any given time in the movie.

Joe Gulielmino, one of surfing’s most progressive and imaginative filmmakers of the modern era, he filmed and produced the flick. He has also produced films like “Somewhere” starring three-time world champion surfer Mick Fanning and “Secret Machine.” It is also interesting to note that the entire movie was filmed using 16mm film, which gave the movie an old-school spin on new generation surfing.