No under 13s

Sweet Adventure

Fri Aug 26, 20:00 - Fri Aug 26, 22:00

The Labia Theatre


19:00 for 20:00 at the Labia followed by an after party at The Athletic Social Club

Celebrated filmmaker Peter Hamblin, who made Let’s Be Frank and RISS, presents SWEET ADVENTURE


This irreverent take on the surfing film Endless Summer narrated by Selema Masekela, son of South African jazz legend Hugh, premieres in Cape Town at the Labia Theatre - the same venue the original film did in 1966.

Hamblin brings a Hollywood flair to Sweet Adventure, while Masekela's acerbic narration ironically contrasts with the quaintness of Endless Summer, the most watched feature documentary of all-time.

As humans burst out of the confines of the pandemic lockdowns, cleverly spun links to the famous film drive an attempt to find the essence of "sweet" adventure. The stars of the 1994 sequel, Endless Summer 2, Pat O'Connell and Roberg Wingnut Weaver also appear, followed by a cameo by Dana Brown, son of Bruce Brown, who directed the original film.

"Dad would talk about the joy of adventure. The beauty of the experience. The love of the unknown. It's a joy that lives with us long after the last wave fades," Brown says.

To rekindle this old school spirit of adventure, three Californian proponents of the carefree, sun-kissed culture of surfing and skateboarding Albee Layer, Matt Meola, and Nora Vasconcellos embark on a surf trip to El Salvadore, a lush central American country on the Pacific coast.

Masekela’s experience as a celebrated American television host, sports commentator, and actor comes to the fore in the film. His cynical wit and dry disdain for modern attitudes are the perfect foil to Hamblin's flamboyant use of camera technique and editing. The son of a Haitian mother and Hugh Masekela, Selema was born in Los Angeles in 1971 at the height of Apartheid. As a youngster in southern California, he found a love for adventure sports, including surfing, snowboarding and skateboarding. 

Between fascinating cultural interactions in El Salvador, the trio of two well known surfers Layer and Meola, and champion skateboarder Vasconcellos discover pristine spots along a spectacular coastline. They succeed in finding the magic they seek - the zeitgeist of their ‘sweet adventure’.

Sweet Adventure has been dubbed a masterpiece by critics who know Hamblin from his early projects Let’s Be Frank - an Emmy Award-winning documentary that follows Cape Town big wave surfer Frank Solomon; and RISS, which profiles the life and career of multiple world champion Carissa Moore.

For the African premiere, Hamblin contacted the Wavescape Surf & Ocean Festival to assist in screening his film at the Labia Theatre in Cape Town to close a circle that has lasted since 1966, when the father of South African surfing John Whitmore showed Endless Summer for the first time in Africa. Sweet Adventure will be screened on Friday 26 August, followed by drinks at the Athletic Social Club. Tickets at here

Demi Taylor and Chris Nelson from the London Surf Film Festival said that Hamblin had created a new film genre. 

"Surf movies, for the most part, fall into distinct categories. There’s the part film, the documentary, the travel adventure, the biopic. Then there’s the Peter Hamblin way. Nothing is off the table. There’s a certain sprinkling of magic dust that’s hard to describe. It’s like turning the dial up to 11,” they said.

While Sweet Adventure was a film about adventure, it was more than that. It was about the things that humans have been missing, partly perhaps because of Covid, but also because of the noisy clamor that modern life had become.  

"Sweet Adventure wears its heart on its sleeve - it has the soul of a surf travel classic. While Endless Summer may be the landmark of the genre, for most people it’s the follow up that is imprinted on their grommet-hood. And it isn’t long before Endless Summer 2 protagonists Pat O’Connell and Wingnut appear on screen, with the Force clearly still strong with them, the timeless chemistry serving as a spirit animal to drive the film forward.

"Combining jaw dropping surfing, stunning cinematography, secret spots, helicopters, bowl riding, new discoveries, good times and more, this must-see travelogue stirs the wanderlust, reignites the stoke and reminds us all of just what we’ve been missing – those good times shared with old friends in new places," they said.


Sweet Adventure
The Labia Theatre
68 Orange St, Gardens, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa
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