God Went Surfing with the Devil
Surf culture is not something usually considered in context to the Palestinian city of Gaza. But for the surfers of the Gaza Strip, Al Deira beach is a refuge where the allure of the surf allows them to forget “the situation.” A story in the Los Angeles Times about a rag-tag group of Arabic surfers inspired surfing legend, Dorian “Doc” Paskowitz, to bring a dozen surf boards into the besieged country on a Surfing 4 Peace mission. GOD WENT SURFING WITH THE DEVIL, filmed in the spring 2008, tells the epic journey of the Surfing 4Peace emissaries, while they attempt to deliver an additional 23 surfboards to Gaza during a particularly violent time. From first-time director, Alexander Klein, comes an inspirational film that charts the difficulties and dangers encountered by surfers in Gaza and how a non-profit group would attempt to deliver these surfboards into the region. Along the way, Israelis, Arab-Israelis and Palestinians who are affected by the violence, speak candidly about their daily struggle to supersede the conflict through the pure joy of surfing. Divided by politics, united by surf. The film won the “Duke Spirit” award at the California Surf Film Festival and was an official selection at Palm Beach Film Festival, Santa Barbara International Film Festival, Woods Hole Film Festival, Globians DocFest Berlin and Hawaii International Film Festival.