Surfs Up: Better Than You Remember

Synopsis and Summary Cont.

The next act focuses on Cody’s training and the mentor-learner/father-son relationship between him and Z. At first Cody’s impatience leads him to fail and become frustrated, rushing to make a board only to have it break and for Z to laugh at him. After a fun cave surf date with Lani, Cody learns the importance of relaxation while surfing, and even stays up to build his very own board (a good one this time). Finally, once Cody shows that he has the capacity to have fun, Z gets in the water with him. (Side note: the way Zoey reacts to Z surfing is so heartwarming on jah)

The act comes to a head when Z refuses to see Cody surf at the Big Z Memorial contest. I want to add as well; Chicken Jo spends the entire act wandering the jungle interacting with the camera crew and an indigenous species of penguins and it’s genuinely funny. Jon Heder has a voice perfectly suited for “vacant” characters if that makes sense. He sounds dumb and he makes me laugh.

Anyways again Cody runs into Chicken Jo right as the competition is about to start. They both get to the beach in the nick of time and suddenly Cody is thrust into the action. However, a more even tempered and patient Cody catches an incredible wave and secures a place in the finals alongside Chicken Jo and… TANK!

Sure enough, as soon as our finalists are off, Tank begins to antagonize Jo. And in an incredible act of character development, Cody positions himself between Jo and Tank in order to draw Tank away from Jo. They both end up in THE BONEYARD, a collection of jagged and ominously sounding Rocks.

Cody and Tank make their way through the rocks until Tank knocks Cody off his board and a rock knocks Tank off his board. Everyone now thinks both surfers are dead, but lucky for Cody, Z was chillin on those rocks and is able to pull Cody to safety.

In yet another surprisingly emotional scene, Z reunites with the surfing community after bringing Cody to the beach. Lani and Cody embrace, Z condemns the merchandising of surfing, and Tank gets eaten by the cannibal penguins (wait). The movie ends with a slow-motion shot of Cody and Z LITERALLY surfing off into the sunset. WHAT. A. FILM.


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