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Between Land & Sea

Film Movement // Unrated // September 11, 2018
List Price: $24.95 [Buy now and save at Amazon]

Review by Neil Lumbard | posted October 30, 2018 | E-mail the Author
Between Land and Sea DVD Review

Between Land and Sea is a documentary feature exploring the world of surfing with a group of dedicated, passionate surfers from Ireland's coast of County Clare. The film is produced by Anne Mcloughlin and Jamie Lee D'Alton. This is a personal and reflective documentary which has some unique and interesting insights into the dreams and dedication held by surfers to excel at their craft.

The documentary features a number of noteworthy Ireland surfers as they discuss their unique goals and approaches to their craft. The surfers discuss some of the reasons behind their dedication to the sport: whether it be for the sport of it, the exhilaration, or the feel of being surrounded by the ocean. Featuring a cast which includes Fergal Smith, Ollie O'flaherty, John McCarthy, Tom Doidge Harrison, Raquel Rudio Rodriguez, Dexter McCullagh, Ben Bennett, and Pat Conway, this documentary should please longtime surfing fans and newcomer's alike.

Over the course of the documentary, the filmmakers traverse alongside the ocean coastline. The film delves into the surfer's families and the support of their loved ones for their dreams. The film has a warmth to it that is comforting in its jubilant enthusiasm for the surfer's ambitions. It's a pleasant, enjoyable documentary experience.

The film even features a pleasant score composed by Michael Fleming. The film was also edited by Andrew Hearne, who does an exceptional job of emphasizing both interviews and the footage of surfing featured throughout the feature. The cinematographer did excellent work as well with highlighting the surfing in action in a way that feels full of energy.

The documentary was directed by Ross Whitaker (Bye Bye Now). Whitaker has crafted an exceptional film about the drive of surfers (or should that read swim?) as they pursue the sport to its full capacity. Even those without much familiarity with the sport will find this to be a charming and enlightening experience which is worth checking out.

The DVD:


Video:

Between Land and Sea is presented on DVD with a 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen presentation preserving the film's original aspect ratio. This is a modest looking DVD which has a number of compression artifacts and middling clarity. Despite an inferior picture the beautiful scenery of the ocean waves amid the surfing still makes a viewing of the documentary worthwhile. The picture quality might be disappointing but the cinematography is interesting and effective.

Audio:

The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo audio. This is a standard stereo track which is unsurprisingly rather flat and uninspired. It's not really a surprise given that this is a low-budget documentary production. On the bright side, the film's dialogue is still easy enough to understand throughout and the score is effective as a back-drop the experience.


Extras:

There are no extras on this release.

Final Thoughts:

Between Land and Sea is an Ireland-based documentary feature film about surfers and their individual journeys to excel at their passion in the world of surfing. The film has a clear narrative and an intimate approach. Director Whitaker focuses intently on each surfer's individual approach to the sport and craft of surfing. The documentary even features an appearance by surfing legend Shane Dorian. For fans (and non-fans) of surfing, this is a pleasing documentary which is well worthwhile.

Recommended.

Neil Lumbard is a lifelong fan of cinema. He aspires to make movies and has written two screenplays on spec. He loves writing, and currently does in Texas.

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