Philip Gnadt & Mickey Yamine

Gaza Surf Club

2016 Germany
97min • Arabic, English, English subtitles
Theme: Rokumentti selection
18.11.2017 | Time: 16.00 | Venue: Tapio 4

*sold out*

Surfing amidst the war 

When the everyday life is made of barriers, barbed wire fences and borders controlled with guns, you need to look further than your own street to find hope. One option is heading towards the waves and freedom of the ocean. The Gaza Strip, stuck between Israel, Egypt, and the Mediterranean Sea, offers fairly grim surroundings for its citizens, but there is still enough room for dreams to live. The beautiful documentary Gaza Surf Club is about these dreams. And, of course, about surfing. 

Young Ibrahim wants to start a surf club. It’s an insane idea and extremely difficult to realise, but Ibrahim isn’t giving up. With the help of an online friend, he goes to Hawaii to learn about the surfing business. 15-year-old Sabah is a surfer despite the fact that it’s forbidden for girls her age. Thankfully her father doesn’t give in to the pressure from the community and lets the girl surf. 42-year-old veteran surfer Abu Jayeb was born, has lived, and plans to die by the sea. On the waves you can forget there is no hope, which is exactly why a few flickers of it remain. 

Gaza Surf Club is a visually gorgeous film, accompanied by a great soundtrack. If you didn’t know this was a documentary, the featured survival stories would sound implausible. Luckily life is full of surprises.