Set in the peroxide fluoro circus of 80’s surfing, GIRLS CAN’T SURF follows the trailblazing life of the women who paved the way in the world of professional surfing and describes the grit it took to survive years of misogyny within the sport. Featuring champion professional surfers such as Jodie Cooper, Frieda Zamba, Pauline Menczer, Lisa Andersen, Pam Burridge, Wendy Botha, Layne Beachley and more, these women recount the details of their beginnings in surfing and the challenges-such as misogyny and homophobia-that accompanied them.

While their dreams were simple, the surrounding circumstances were not. Most male athletes bullied and dehumanized female surfers. But these women were not so easily intimidated. Without sponsors or money, they packed their bags and lived in vans to join the pro competitions across the globe. They endured the usual amount of body aches an athlete experiences, but also had to push hard to be accepted on bigger waves and highly lucrative competitions. Spotlighting the world of 80s and 90s professional surfing, GIRLS CAN’T SURF highlights the trials and tribulations of being a woman who just wants to surf, ultimately challenging the status quo and changing the male-dominating world of surfing forever.

-Kanani Lyons




Online Access

Access Window: November 4, 2021 - November 28, 2021
Passholder Access: All Access, Limited Virtual, Supporter, Hale Virtual Festival, Individual
Only Accessible from: USA

Live Stream

Film Details

DIRECTOR(S)Christopher Nelius
PRODUCER(S)Christopher Nelius, Michaela Perske
CASTLisa Andersen, Layne Beachley, Wendy Botha, Pam Burridge, Jodie Cooper, Pauline Menzcer, Jorja Smith, Jolene Smith, Frieda Zamba

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Film Details

PREMIERE STATUS: Hawai‘i Premiere
YEAR: 2020
RUN TIME: 108 Minutes


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