‘Soul Surfer’ is the Inspiring True Story of Bethany Hamilton

August 10, 2011 6 Comments

Inspirational stories are plentiful, but few have such a personal portrait. In fact, most turn out to, almost, shame their subject, and in that, there is little inspiring about then. It would stand to reason than that, most the time, fans like to feel uplifted following the conclusion (hence the inspiration). Many of us probably recall the name Bethany Hamilton, and her story of faith in recovering from something that nearly stole her dreams. This tells her story. 

Soul Surfer (2011) Film Review

Bethany Hamilton (AnnaSophia Robb) lives the kind of life most teenagers only enjoy during summer vacations. Living in Hawaii provides her the opportunity to feed her passion: surfing. She spends more of her time in the water than on dry land. Her mother (Helen Hunt) won’t give permission for her to go night surfing, but since Bethany really wants to try it, she goes anyway to meet with a group of close friends; and she falls in love with the sport just a little bit more for having that experience. Bethany’s competitive prospects are bright but her dreams are cut short when she falls victim to a shark attack, and her life is forever changed…

FILM REVIEW | ‘The Blind Side’: An Inspiring True Story
‘Soul Surfer’ is the Inspiring True Story of Bethany Hamilton. Reviewing the 2011 film with AnnaSophia Robb, Helen Hunt and Dennis Quaid. © Rissi JC

For a true story that is still relatable to today’s society (unlike an event that might have happened 200 years ago), Soul Surfer is an excellent script. The actors portray their characters with ease, emotion and empathy, and I love that about the story. Young AnnaSophia is absolutely grand in the role; she seems to dominate each scene in a way that helps us understand her new normal.  

The supporting cast is equally wonderful, which includes, Dennis Quaid, Lorraine Nicholson and Carrie Underwood. Although, honestly, I do think Underwood (a singer) could have given a bit more. As a result some of the scenes between her and Anna feel less “easy.” Despite this, there are some really touching, emotional moments. Likewise, the filming (likely thanks to the gorgeous scenery!) and music are phenomenal; including some awesome surfing shots. (Just a fun piece of trivia for you all: Bethany herself is a stunt double.)

The emotional impact of this story is incredible. Bethany’s initial optimism wanes and it takes a trip across the world to help her come to grips with loss. I don’t know how accurate the movie is, but if some of this composure is real, then it’s a testament to Bethany’s strong will. The fact that the movie ends without a win but focuses on conquering fear, and in that experiencing a more valuable lesson, is what makes her a champion.

(Disclosure: this post does contain affiliate links; if you buy anything through these links, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you. Thank you to anyone who makes a purchase through these links. Read the disclosure page for details.)

You can find Soul Surfer digitally on Amazon Video.

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‘Soul Surfer’ is the Inspiring True Story of Bethany Hamilton. Reviewing the 2011 film with AnnaSophia Robb, Helen Hunt and Dennis Quaid. #Movies #FWArchives #Reviews #TrueStory #Inspirational Click To Tweet

CONTENT: there is a shark attack, which is relatively quick. The camera captures an underwater shot of the shark coming up on Bethany before she is pulled under with a lot of blood, once she is pulled from the water, there is a tense sequence. Many of the girls wear bikinis through the majority of the film. Kids sneak out without parent’s permission.

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.

Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.

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  • Meghan August 11, 2011 at 1:31 PM

    Really enjoyed this movie. :)

  • Rissi August 12, 2011 at 12:40 AM

    Me too. =) It was actually a lot better than I thought.

    Thanks again for stopping by, Meghan.

  • Ella August 24, 2011 at 9:29 PM

    I've been wanting to see soul surfer.

  • Rissi August 24, 2011 at 10:22 PM

    I hope you see "Soul Surfer" in the near future, Ella! It is really good and I discovered that I liked it much better than I'd originally thought – it will probably be a DVD I will purchase someday. If you do see it, let us all know what you thought.

    Thank you so much for stopping by Ella!

  • Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com October 26, 2011 at 5:15 PM

    I linked to your review today :)

  • Rissi October 26, 2011 at 6:48 PM

    Thank you SO much, Juju! I really appreciate that. =)

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