Surf's Up Reviews
The one with passion win the competition
The main character doesn't need to win but he defeat the enemy and got the answer.
"The ocean just got cooler."
Surf's Up is one of the more underrated animated films in my opinion. It also happens to be one of my most loved. I love the idea to present it in documentary format. That's just a great idea that adds a new layer to the genre. This is a clever, funny, touching, and beautiful little film with a great voice cast. I'd also label it as cool, which is not an attribution I give to many kid oriented movies. This one is however. It's got a good little soundtrack and really uses the awesomeness of surfing to its advantage.
Cody Maverick is a penguin living in Antarctica with his mother and brother. Both of them think he needs to get a life. All he wants to do though is surf. A documentary filmmaker decides to make a movie on Cody and his rise. When a talent scout comes and takes him away, we follow him to the biggest surf competition, which is named after Cody's fallen hero, Big Z. Cody is the underdog at the competition, but a stranger helps him hone his skills and become the person(penguin) he needs to be. The story has a nice family oriented message that goes along with it, just like every other kid movie. This one, however, is a lot more fun than the average kid movie.
Cody is a character we can cheer for. The dialogue is cool, especially when you're talking about an animated, made for kids movie. The visuals are awesome. The surfing scenes are amazing. It's just an all around cool, fun, and humorous little movie that will surely keep the children in your family entertained, while doing more than enough for the adults as well. This one will always be one of my favorites.
This is a strange case of film to go with this style for an animated film but it strangely works. Mainly the comedy is the thing that works. The film has this strangely realistic tone to it much like a mockumentary such as "This is Spinal Tap"' and this film could've actually worked as a live action film because of how there is almost no instances where them being birds applies to the plot. If you changed the antarctic to somewhere in the U.S. or something the film could've actually been a live action film, but this isn't saying the film doesn't work. This is a very interesting premise for an animated film and I can really respect this interesting idea.
As I said before the comedy in this film is what really shines and is the main selling point of the film next to the surprisingly good and realistic surfing scenes. The timing in some of these jokes and the laid back tone just makes the jokes all the more funnier the further the film goes. Now I'm not all a huge fan of dry or improv humor in film such as in Napoleon Dynamite, but this is one of those rare instances where this is just flat out hilarious and it really does work well with the characters and these actors all being very good at improv and dry humor. The interactions that happen with the cameraman are also very funny, mainly when the small little pingu tribe tries to attack Chicken Joe and instead shoot the cameraman instead, and each time it just makes me almost die of laughter.
Another one of the main things that really makes this movie shine is the incredible surfing scenes in the film. Taking references from expert surfers, this films animators really knew what they were doing when examining these surfers and capturing this in the film. The wipeouts look good and it is all animated incredibly well. The main climax surfing competition is of course one of the biggest highlights of the film and it is the best scene and the most adrenaline pumping scene in the film as well. The way the scenes are shot work so well and the water coming at the camera during the scene also help make this seem much more realistic.
Overall the film has good animation, the humor is great, and the surfining scenes are surprisingly very good for an animated film. If you like mockumentaries or dry humor films you may really enjoy this film.
What I liked about the film was the style of approach in this animation. It's done like a documentary, like a reality show.
It's funny, the characters are cool and the voice acting is entertaining. However, I felt the story wasn't strong enough.
Still, it was an alright choice, a very okay film.
Another big studio animation film that I enjoyed very much. In fact, I enjoyed it even more than I thought.
"Surf's Up" failed at the box office. One reason could've been that "Happy Feet" was released half a year earlier. Two animated films about penguins? I guess people had enough of 'em.
But to give the film some credit, I enjoyed a lot the documentary element of the film. It also made the film more suitable for the more mature audience. During the film, I thought about the target audience, and I can't really think that the littlest of people would enjoy the film as much as those in their teens or older than that.
The animation is once again top notch, but that is something that the audience is used to nowadays. The water looks extemely nice and some scenes look like something of a postcard.
There's a lot of talent behind the voices. Jeff Bridges, James Woods, Jon Heder and the golden boy of Hollywood, Shia LaBeouf. Ones to "watch" are especially Bridges and Heder, they do an excellent job. Another fun character is the young penguin who wants to surf but can't really swim that good...
"You got a koa board?
- I don't have a board board..."
So, "Surf's Up" is recommended to all fans of good animations. The story is nice and the characters are good. The movie also has a message about competing so kids should really have a look. Remember to have fun!
It kept my kids attention and for me that is a big plus.