Splinters

Surfing meets sociology in "Splinters," a compelling docu about the sport's arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce's noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their dry-land dramas.

With:
With: Angelus Lipahi, Ezekiel Afara, Lesley Umpa, Susan Umpa, Steve Tekwie, Andy Abel. (Melanesian Pidgin, English dialogue)

Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their dry-land dramas. Pic should have a bright future as a VOD, homevid and specialized broadcast item; limited release begins Feb. 3 in Gotham.

The popularity of surfing in the island nation has grown spectacularly since an Aussie pilot gave Vanimo its first board in the early 1980s. Filmed in the lead-up to Papua New Guinea’s first-ever national surfing titles, the docu examines the sport’s profound social impact through the preparations of local champion Angelus Lipahi, who’s facing disqualification for non-payment of alimony; brash contender Ezekiel Afara; and sisters Lesley and Susan Umpa, whose participation has inspired other girls and provoked heated discussion about gender roles in the male-dominated community. Expertly edited by Kim Roberts (“Food, Inc.”), the pic stands out from surf docus that are just about finding the perfect wave. Tech credits are fine.

Splinters

Production: A SnagFilms release of an In Effect Films production in association with Divisadero Pictures, Little House Prods. (International sales: SnagFilms, Washington, D.C.) Produced by Adam Pesce, Perrin Chiles. Executive producers, Paul Morgan, Daniel Davila, Catherine Davila, Danielle Robinson, Alan Siegel. Co-producers, TJ Barrack, Wes Brown. Directed by Adam Pesce.

Crew: Camera (color, mini-DV-to-HD), Pesce; editor, Kim Roberts; music, Jesse Voccia. Reviewed at Hawaii Film Festival (competing), Oct. 19, 2011. (Also in 2011 Warsaw, Tribeca film festivals; 2011 Intl. Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam.) Running time: 94 MIN.

With: With: Angelus Lipahi, Ezekiel Afara, Lesley Umpa, Susan Umpa, Steve Tekwie, Andy Abel. (Melanesian Pidgin, English dialogue)

More Film

  • 'Murder Me, Monster' Review: Mystifying Art-house

    Cannes Film Review: 'Murder Me, Monster'

    Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their […]

  • A Quiet Place

    China Box Office: ‘A Quiet Place’ Opens Third Behind ‘Infinity War'

    Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their […]

  • Patricia Morison Dead: 'Kiss Me Kate'

    Patricia Morison, Stage Star of 'Kiss Me, Kate', Dies at 103

    Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their […]

  • Does Cannes Have a Future? Yes,

    Does Cannes Have a Future? Yes, But the Festival Needs to Change

    Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their […]

  • DEADPOOL 2

    'Deadpool 2' Leads International Box Office With Powerful $176 Million Debut

    Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their […]

  • BlacKkKlansman

    Variety Critics Name the 12 Best Movies From Cannes 2018

    Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their […]

  • DEADPOOL 2

    Box Office: 'Deadpool 2' Propels to $125 Million Opening

    Surfing meets sociology in “Splinters,” a compelling docu about the sport’s arrival in the Papua New Guinea village of Vanimo. Following four riders whose quest for glory is surrounded by factional rivalries and bitter personal conflicts, helmer Adam Pesce’s noteworthy debut carefully balances uplifting footage of hopefuls chasing dreams with startlingly raw coverage of their […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content