“Everybody that surfs in southern California knows Curt…” says Dane Reynolds, one of the world’s best surfers, who regularly surfed with Curt as a kid. “Every generation of groms grows up with him… hanging out with him. He’s famous.”
Curt has autism and this short but heart-warming documentary tells of his love of surfing, the sport which he believes saved his life. It includes interviews with surfers, parents of groms, his boss and his parents, who were told after young Curt’s diagnosis that he’d need to be institutionalised for life. Their amazing response: “I’ll be god damn…”
Curt, who was 49 in the film and is now 50, started surfing as a child but his condition means that he is, as one woman puts it in the film, is like “a 14 year old in a man’s body”, which makes him a kind of eternal grom. It also explains why he gets on so well with actual groms, providing a lifeline for many parents who don’t have time to take their kids surfing.
The film, directed and edited by Brendon Hearne, shows him larking about like a grom with the groms, joke-wrestling, putting them in trash cans, pranks and shenanigans at contests…as one mum puts it: “it’s good for kids as it takes their minds off being stressed about winning.”
Some parents were a little bit funny about an older stranger hanging around with their kids but once they got to know him most realised what an asset he’d be in their kids lives, and they his. A great and inspiring watch.
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