Riding Giants - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Riding Giants Reviews

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January 17, 2012
This movie captures what it is to be a surfer. 'Its like falling in love... unless youve done it u cant explain' paraphrasing but many great moments in thus one.
December 17, 2011
I liked Step into Liquid and it seems like Riding Giants is the supperior surfing documentary.
December 6, 2011
A truly excellent documentary on the early surf scene, predominantly the development of "big wave" surfing.The whole story of the sports development from some Hawaiian natives, to the anarchic spirited US "beach bums" through the explosion of the sport to the glossy 80s mainstream and the current use of technologically advanced boards and co-ordinated jet-ski teams allowing previously unimaginable waves to be ridden. Perfectly captures the vibe of the sport, and the joy and awe nature inspires in people.
½ November 7, 2011
Super interesting, and some awesome shots.
Informative, but slightly bland and very straightforward narrative.
Very cool though. Felt a lot longer than it was
October 7, 2011
Started watching this when I was quiet tired one night. Ended up watching it right to the end as I couldn't tun it off. I'm no surfer but this film is adrenaline inducing just to watch. Amazing what they do and a well crafted documentary.
½ August 4, 2011
crazy ass big waves!!! cool stories
July 26, 2011
Lots of really good surfing shots, but it's about surfing. If you are really into that you'll love this. It was fine. I'm not sure how it got on my Netflix queue.
May 11, 2011
Awesome movie. A tribute to the culture of surfing. Makes me wanna go to the beach.
May 10, 2011
one of the best documentarys ever!
May 1, 2011
Great documentary on Surfing!
½ April 22, 2011
Dokument├Ąr om surfkulturen
½ April 11, 2011
Simply breath-taking. How anyone could do what these surfers do is beyond me.
March 14, 2011
I liked this movie:}
September 24, 2010
I enjoyed this movie. It solidified and broke down a lot of cliches about those who go out riding the waves. I would assume this movie would have been better seen on the big screen. Some scenes are absolutely beautiful. Interesting but nothing I would search out to include in my library.
September 19, 2010
Awesome doc, well worth your time.
July 29, 2010
This movie got me pumped up for life
July 12, 2010
A great surfing documentary whether you like surfing or not.
½ May 27, 2010
A bunch of crazy bitches
May 24, 2010
surfing made it fantastic...
½ May 22, 2010
I first heard of Riding Giants when a guy named Laird Hamilton came on The Daily Show (must have been 2004 or so) and talked about this movie that had been made about big-wave surfing. Now, I'm not a surfer. I'm not even a frequent beach-goer, but I do like to watch the ocean. I also enjoy watching most of the extreme sports that have sort have been born in the last 50 years or so. The director of Riding Giants, Stacy Peralta, did another movie I liked called Dogtown and Z-Boys. Both movies are kind of similar in that they're documentaries about the history and evolution of their respective sports. Dogtown and Z-Boys also dealt with surfers, but it was about surfers who discovered the art of skateboarding. It's not too fresh in my mind, so I'm nowhere near ready to write down my complete thoughts on it, but I think it's worth checking out.

I found Riding Giants to be a very satisfying movie experience. I felt like I learned something while being completely entertained at the same time. There is a lot of surf footage throughout to keep the eyes stimulated, and the documentary includes interviews from most of the people who were there when surfing took off. Nay, the interviews include most of the people who made surfing what it is today.

The beginning of Peralta's movie has a two minute recap of surfing history up until the 1950's. which is where the focus of this film starts. We hear first hand experiences of some of the judgments made towards these guys. One guy even mentioned that his parents considered his surfing to be like a disease, and that they didn't understand a sport without bleachers or a scoreboard. If my memory serves me right, not a single surfer in the movie refers to it as a sport. For them, it's a lifestyle. I was taken in by the descriptions of what it felt like to be out there in the ocean catching the biggest waves they could. Greg Noll, one of the pioneers of big-wave surfing, compared the ocean to a woman, and his surfing, a love affair. The stories range from fun as they talk about the joys of surfing to tragic as they discuss the dangers of this lifestyle.

As I said earlier, the surf footage is enough to keep the eyes awake. I almost feel like this is the kind of movie I could watch muted and still view attentively. Especially as the movie progresses and the waves attempted are bigger and bigger with sharper and sharper footage as cinema technology improves.

My favorite quote of the movie came from Laird Hamilton, but it was relayed through his wife. When talking about what it feels like when the ocean is calm and there are no surf opportunities, Laird Hamilton explained "It's like being a dragon slayer, but there are no more dragons." Just emphasizing that surfing is not simply a hobby to pass the time. It's who they are through and through, and I think that's pretty gnarly.
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