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Soul Surfer: Movie Review December 7, 2011

Posted by heidi skarie in Movie reveiew.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Recently we rented Soul Surfer. I was especially interested in this movie because when I was on a beach in Oahu, Bethany Hamilton walked by with her surfboard. She may have been in Oahu for the making of the film. Bethany Hamilton is the person whose life the movie is based on. She isn’t in the movie, but she and her family were there daily for the filming. Bethany was easy to recognize because she has one arm. At the age of thirteen she was on her surfboard waiting for a good wave when a shark attacked her. The story isn’t a horror movie about a shark attack, but about a young girl who loved to surf and how she had the courage and determination to keep surfing even after losing one arm.

The title Soul Surfer is a term coined in the 1960’s to refer to someone who surfs purely for pleasure. This was Bethany Hamilton. She would surf all day long. Her family said she wouldn’t even come in to eat and they’d have to bring her food. The title has a double meaning as it also refers to Bethany’s faith in God that helped her recover. She realized she could serve God even more with her injury because she could reach more people world wide and tell them about God’s love.

AnnaSophia Robbs plays Bethany Hamilton in the movie. She spent a month with Bethany to get to know her and learn how to surf. When you rent the movie be sure to watch the special feature made about Bethany’s life after you see the movie.

Here is a photo on AnnaSophia Robbs and Bethany Hamiton. Bethany is on the left.

I loved the movie because it was about a real person who is courageous and spiritual. At the time I saw it I was still wearing a cast for my broken wrist and I could identify with her struggle to do things with one hand. I also counted my blessings that my cast would come off and I’d regain full use of my arm. Life is always giving us challenges that can help us grow into a more loving person if we accept them and learned from them.

The following is a video clip of the movie.

Here is Bethany’s story taken from her site.
Bethany’s Story
It came, literally, out of the blue.
I had no warning at all; not even the slightest hint of danger on the horizon. The waves were small and inconsistent, and I was just kind of rolling along with them, relaxing on my board with my left arm dangling in the cool water. I remember thinking, “I hope the surf picks up soon…”

That’s all it took: a split second. I felt a lot of pressure and a couple of lightning fast tugs. Then I watched in shock as the water around me turned bright red. Somehow, I stayed calm. My left arm was gone almost to the armpit, along with a huge crescent-shaped chunk of my red, white and blue surfboard…

I remember most clearly what the Kauai paramedic said to me in the ambulance: He spoke softly and held my hand as we were pulling out of the beach parking lot. He whispered in my ear, “God will never leave you or forsake you.” He was right. 

I believe in God. Nobody made me believe; I don’t think you can or should try to force someone to believe something. And even though my parents taught me stuff about God and read Bible stories to me from as early as I can remember… it was my choice to become a believer in Him. The way I see it, putting our faith in God is something that each person has to come to on his or her own. It’s your own personal relationship with Him; a bond that’s as unique as a fingerprint.

The following is a video Bethany made.

Bethany also wrote a book titled Soul Surfer about her experience.



1. happydeviant - December 29, 2011

insiring story. its is great that she was able to create something great out of that experience.

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