Kauai’s Biggest Celebrity Bethany Hamilton “Soul Surfer” Movie Opened April 8th

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BY MARISA KAGAN RA – Soul Surfer is the Hollywood feature film based on Bethany Hamilton’s incredible life story starring Anna Sophia Robb as Bethany, Helen Hunt as her mother, and Dennis Quaid as her father (not to mention Rip Curl’s Dylan Slater).

Bethany Hamilton, as you might remember, is the brave young lady who despite losing her entire left arm at the age of 13, and nearly dying during a freak shark attack here on Kauai in 2003, went on and fought the odds to become a championship surfer.


Bethany exhibited such courage during her trauma and inspired countless others who have their own struggles, and now a film has been created to honor her gutsy spirit. We, here on Kauai, are so proud of Bethany’s accomplishments and proud of the Garden Isle on film.

Here are a few early reviews out for Soul Surfer:

“But when the lights went down, the film rolled, and I got used to stunning Hollywood superstars portraying people I’ve met, something unexpected happened…I started to enjoy it. The settings are spot on, with many scenes shot on the beaches of Kauai and Oahu, not in front of green screens, or in locations that surfers would instinctively know aren’t Hawaiian. The surfing is possibly the best yet in a Hollywood surf film, with the real-life Bethany Hamilton and Alana Blanchard doing all the surfing for their characters, and frankly, ripping. But the real reason I found myself engaged is Bethany’s story. It seems Bethany’s story is so powerful that not even Hollywood can make it cheesy.” —Joel Patterson, Surfer magazine

“Quality is strong across the board, but Quaid stands out, delivering even the script’s shakier lines with humour and sincerity. The well-toned Robb makes a convincing surfer, thanks in large part to excellent stunt coordination and a judicious deployment of digital effects. Action scenes are set to blaring pop-rock tunes that, while bordering on cheesy, help get the blood pumping anyway. Leonetti’s widescreen images remain razor-sharp above and below water.” —Rob Nelson, Variety Magazine

“If you ever wondered if Hollywood could get it right, the answer is a resounding “yes!” —David Sanford, ANS Move Review

Soul Surfer will be in theaters nationwide on April 8, 2011.

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