Splinters

Splinters

DVD - 2012
Average Rating:
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Twenty years prior, a pilot left behind a surfboard in a remote seaside village in Papua New Guinea. Today, the community is splintering as traditional society is affected by the outside influences introduced by the sport of surfing. Meanwhile four local surfers compete for the country's first-ever national surfing titles, dreaming of a better life.
Publisher: [United States] : SnagFilms, c2012
Branch Call Number: DVD 797.32096 Sp54 2012
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (ca. 94 min.) : sd., col. ; 4 3/4 in

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Saint_Mirin
Sep 30, 2014

From the description and other reviews, I feel like we didn't watch the same film. The primary focus is on two young men who read surfing magazines and dream about leaving PNG. It's not a typical documentary in that there's no narrative and no Q&A between director and subjects. There's few to none statistics and the notion that some pilot left a surfboard behind 20 years ago is never proven or explored. In fact, 27 year old Angelus, is old enough to have recalled this event but never mentions it. Perhaps the strangest aspect is that the level of talent shown is almost nil. The filmmaker doesn't explore WHY the surfers know what a 360 air is and wish to learn this maneuver but are unable to and are never seen even attempting it. A judge even comments on this and it goes unexplored. Angelus has surfed for 11 years but can't do barrels or the 360. ??? The film spends the majority of it's time on Angelus facing prison for refusing to pay child support, and the intrusion of outside cultural beliefs on the customs (women are property) of PNG. That would've been worth exploring. The ending is abrupt and unsatisfying.

KCLSLibrarians May 17, 2014

Recommended for anyone with an interest in anthropology and/or surfing. I thought the documentary was really well made, and it's an interesting peek at a part of the world few of us will ever visit. A few rough parts, though, viewer beware. I had conflicting feelings by the end, which I think is a compliment to the filmmakers.

kevfarley Aug 10, 2013

Facinating look at how the commercialization of surfing can help to enable a few young people to escapse from the limitations of village life in a tourist paradise.

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Saint_Mirin
Sep 30, 2014

Other: There's a scene with what appears to be a dead cat or dog laying on a porch. I don't know if that's food or if starvation led to it's demise or what, but the animal isn't moving or breathing and it's rather sad that the filmmaker chose to show it and failed to explore it.

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Saint_Mirin
Sep 30, 2014

Violence: The culture there is that women are property and the film covers much discussion of beatings from both family members and husbands. Brides are not "sold" but there is a dowry as is still the custom in many cultures. Most villagers can't and don't pay it. There is a scene where a woman is kicked repeatedly in the face and abdomen by her brother.

kevfarley Aug 10, 2013

Violence: Women are beaten and brides are sold.

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