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Surf's Up (2007)

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A behind-the-scenes look at the annual Penguin World Surfing Championship, and its newest participant, up-and-comer Cody Maverick.

Directors:

Ash Brannon, Chris Buck

Writers:

Don Rhymer (screenplay by), Ash Brannon (screenplay by) | 5 more credits »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Shia LaBeouf ... Cody Maverick (voice)
Jeff Bridges ... Zeke 'Big Z' Topanga / 'Geek' (voice)
Zooey Deschanel ... Lani Aliikai (voice)
Jon Heder ... Chicken Joe (voice)
James Woods ... Reggie Belafonte (voice)
Diedrich Bader ... Tank 'The Shredder' Evans (voice)
Mario Cantone ... Mikey Abromowitz (voice)
Kelly Slater ... Kelly (voice)
Rob Machado ... Rob (voice)
Sal Masekela ... SPEN Announcer (voice)
Ash Brannon Ash Brannon ... Filmmaker (voice)
Chris Buck ... Filmmaker (voice)
Brian Posehn ... Glen Maverick (voice)
Dana Belben Dana Belben ... Edna Maverick (voice) (as Dana L. Belben)
Reed Buck Reed Buck ... Arnold (voice)
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Storyline

This story follows a teenage rock hopper penguin named Cody Maverick from his hometown of Shiverpool, Antarctica, where all of the other penguins think he's nothing but a surfing fool, to the "Big Z Memorial Surf Off" on Pen Gu Island. Young Cody is determined to win the most important competition in the world of penguin surfing in honor of "Big Z," a deceased surfing legend whom he has idolized since childhood. But the waves in Pen Gu are different than in Shiverpool, and the competition is steep. The current champ, egotistical Tank Evans, isn't just about to let this little penguin knock him from first place without a fight. When Cody wipes out and encounters Geek, a recluse aging former surfer, living in the jungle, he learns some important lessons about life and surfing, and even teaches Geek a thing or two. Written by Anthony Pereyra (hypersonic91@yahoo.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Makin' Waves Summer 2007 See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild language and some rude humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 June 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Los reyes de las olas See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$100,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$17,640,249, 10 June 2007, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$58,867,694

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$149,044,513
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

SDDS (8 channels)| Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Pre-production began in 2002. See more »

Goofs

After Cody talks to Lani for the first time, he and Chicken Joe walk away talking. Cody mentions Lani by name; however, Lani never told Cody her name. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Filmmaker: Quiet on the set. And we're rolling. Cody Maverick interview, take one.
Cody Maverick: So why are you guys here to interview me?
See more »

Crazy Credits

PRODUCTION BABIES: Elinora Jane Bolwyn, Jamie Vernon Boyce, Spencer Thomas Boyce, Julian Matheson Brannon, Allison Riley Bredow, Malena Franca Brewer, Asher Ian Candell, Samantha Katharine Condro, Ava Lynn Ford, Alexis Mitsue Hara, Hayden Herbst, Kylie Mae Juen, Chris Jooeun Kim, Sarah Kim, Sophia Louisa Kramer, Alfred Limsater, Maya Lilian Melich, Jack William Nash, James Naulin, Collin James Smith, Autumn Grace Walling. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Crowded: Amongst the Waves (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Run Home
Written by Michael Dyball, Michael Heppner, Vincent Nudo, and Daniel Watchorn
Performed by Priestess
Courtesy of RCA Records / Indica
By arrangement with SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Mocumentary style adds a fresh spin to a very family-friendly film
4 January 2009 | by Movie_Muse_ReviewsSee all my reviews

With so many CGI animated feature films starring cute animals pouring in and out of theaters year after year, it can be tough to sort through them all and figure out which ones are actually worth taking a family to. "Surf's Up" belongs in the pile with the good ones. Written and animated similar to a Christopher Guest mocumentary film ("Best in Show," "Waiting for Guffman") there's a unique humor to "Surf's Up" that spins the same old underdog storyline into something unusual and fresh that everyone in the family can enjoy.

The focus of this "documentary" is Cody Maverick (voiced by Shia LaBeouf), a rock-hopper penguin from Shiverpool, Antarctica with a dream of getting away from the south pole and becoming a premiere surfer like his idol Big Z. Cody's prayers are eventually answered despite the fact that he has nothing but an icicle surfboard and some serious ambition. He ends up being spotted by a talent scout and makes his way to Pen-gu island just in time for the penguin world surfing championship

When Cody gets challenged before the tournament and fails against the world's best surfer, Tank Evans (Diedrich Bader), he meets some unlikely friends like Joe the chicken (Jon Heder), a love interest in Lani (Zooey Deschanel), and Geek (Jeff Bridges) who helps Cody learn the waves so he can live his dream and compete in the championship.

There are jokes for the whole family here, which is "Surf's Up"'s most admirable trait. There's enough for the adults without too much material going over kids' heads and there's plenty of physical humor that kids will enjoy. The mocumentary style also provides a fresh set of laughs, even though the movie falls in the milder realm on the humor scale. There's also plenty of good values that one would expect from an animated movie focused on a sport: never give up, winning isn't everything, the value of friendship in picking us up when we fall.

The animation is also strong, though much more cartoonish than the penguin movie "Happy Feet." Most interesting is the way that the animation is meant to reflect what it would look like if the movie were being shot like a live-action documentary. One scene follows Lani carrying Cody through the jungle and it looks like a crew with a camera and one main source of light are following her. So it's very cool in terms of film-making, not just mere concept. "Ratatouille" and Pixar's brilliance aside, this would have won the Oscar in 2008 for its ingenuity.

The best way to describe "Surf's Up" is cute. It's unique, sweet and fun to watch. The films in the bad animation pile try and do too much with the humor and in executing grandiose concepts. This movie keeps the plot simple but shows it in a new and amusing way.


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