Film & TV

Parrish Screens ‘Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton’ Friday

Rory Kennedy's documentary explores the controversial big wave surfer.

The Parrish Art Museum is screening surf documentary Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton this Friday, November 23, at 6 p.m.

Directed by Last Days in Vietnam documentarian Rory Kennedy, the 2017 film tracks the life and career of the legendary big wave surfer who dominated the sport, despite his eschewing professional competition and garnering no support from the surf industry. Mixing never-before-seen archival footage with contemporary verité scenes shot in Southern California, Bermuda and Kauai, Take Every Wave weaves the past and present into an intimate and compelling portrait of the iconic athlete, and frequent Hamptons visitor, at the top of his game.

“I’m excited to continue our post-Thanksgiving surf movie tradition with this amazingly shot and in-depth portrait of someone who isn’t afraid to push sports and life to the limits,” Parrish Curator of Special Projects Corinne Erni says.

Hamilton’s story is told against the backdrop of a winter surf season on Kauai, where El Niño storm systems threaten to bring the biggest surf in decades. Threaded throughout the stunning footage is a revealing, deeply personal interview with Hamilton as well as conversations with family members, friends, collaborators and detractors who know him best. The film covers Hamilton from his early life—including his birth to a surfer mom in the early ’60s—to his work as a model and his daredevil adventures including using a jet ski to get far enough out to catch waves as much as 100 feet high.

Kennedy, the youngest child of Robert F. and Ethel Kennedy, is known for making films about serious topics including Pandemic: Facing AIDS, Ghosts of Abu Ghraib and Last Days in Vietnam. In this film about Hamilton, the director offers a character study presenting the surfer’s drive and singular vision as something akin to a political crusade.

Visit parrishart.org for tickets and info.

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