MU Surf Club Film Event
Club & Greek

MU Surf Hosts Film Event

MU Surf held a film premiere event on campus last week in Pozycki Hall Auditorium. Australian surfer Dion Agius directed the film and named it “The Smiling Bag.”

 MU Surf was able to obtain the film after Agius responded to emails requesting the movie. In his email, Agius sent the movie file available for download and also thanked the prospective viewers. Agius wrote, “I just wanna say thank you so much for taking the time to email in chasing the movie. I’m stoked you took the time and that you want to see it. And it’s been such an amazing experience to hear from everyone all over the world!”

He is a household name in the surfing community and has been for years. However, this is the first time Agius created a project of this length and magnitude.

The movie ran just shy of 40 minutes and afterwards the MU surfers were able to showcase movies and surfing of their own.

And if all of that was not enough, Surf Taco donated fajitas, tacos, rice, beans, salsa and of course plenty of chips for the hungry students, faculty and community members.

Despite the well-deserved popularity of Monmouth’s basketball team, the club’s event still had a solid crowd. The diverse gathering varied from business students and MU surfers, to local Long Branch legends.

“It’s pretty cool to have guys like Richard Lee of the Surfers’ Environmental Alliance (SEA) and Jeff Salmon wanting to be a part of what we do, and wanting to help us out,” said Senior MU Surf President and senior health and physical education student Tyler Sankey.

“Just goes to show how the people within NJ surf culture can come together to make things happen and add to our turnout,” said Sankey.

The attendees were able to see a wide variety of surfing and surf films. As people walked in, a preliminary surf film called Still Filthy was on the projector. Hungry and ill-fed students ate the catered, free Surf Taco and slowly took their seats as everyone filed in. After stragglers found their way out of Monmouth’s labyrinth of a parking lot, the lights dimmed and The Smiling Bag began.

“I thought the film was unique in that it wasn’t mainstream but still had some great footage. It was a pleasure to help get this up and going. But to be honest it was really the board and the members organizing the event,” said Professor and Surf Club Advisor Matthew Harmon.

Some in attendance had never even seen a surf movie, while others were much more seasoned.

“[The movie had an] interesting framework. The first text you saw, read something like, ‘movie not formatted for a short attention span,’” said Executive Director of the Surfer’s Environmental Alliance (SEA), Richard Lee.

Lee has been surfing and living in the Monmouth County area for a lifetime. His presence along with the friends he brought to the event was much appreciated by the Club.

“[The film] definitely pushed the level of—I guess you’d say—psychedelic images,” said Lee.

“We liked what the guys put together also. Those edits were just as interesting and really showed passion. The SEA loves working with the club and hopes this is the beginning of a new relationship,” said Lee.

While the Executive Director of the SEA could rattle off hundreds of surfing movies he has enjoyed throughout his life, it was interesting to hear from people who are not as well-versed in this department.

Kelsey Rudowitiz, a junior Business Administration student and Surf Club advocate said, “[The film] was different than anything you would see on Netflix or in the movies—totally original. As someone who hasn’t really watched surfing films before it was definitely really cool to watch such an exclusive film like that.”

Rudowitz continued to say, “It was also nice to see some edits of Monmouth’s very own surfers. And of course, the Surf Taco was another added bonus.”

The goal of the event and for any Surf Club event is to raise awareness about the NJ surfing community and to show that there is an interest for surfing on campus. If you are someone who missed out on this event and is interested, there is more to come.

“[Surf Club] has a bowling event coming up with Surf Taco on Friday, March 3rd from 6-8 PM at Shore Lanes in Neptune. Details are located on the Club Instagram page, mu_surf. In addition the Club plans to compete at a regional collegiate surf contest in Florida, they will be fundraising very soon.

Surf Club was extremely excited and appreciative to receive help from their friends at Surf Taco, their advisor Matt Harmon and of course Amy Bellina, the Director of Student Activites at MU.

PHOTO TAKEN by Ryan Gallagher