After a successful career as a doctor in the '60s, surfer and sex guru Dorian Paskowitz bought a camper, got married, and moved to the beach — permanently. He raised eight boys and one girl completely off the grid, subsisting literally on pennies, passing on his love of health food and the ocean to his wave-riding brood, all of whom became renowned surfing champs. But the Paskowitz kids, in-"Doc"-trinated at a young age, were not so happy with the gypsy life, as they reveal in this illuminating film.
If oddball families fascinate you, then "Surfwise" will really blow your mind. The Paskowitz clan is famous in surfing circles, but never before have we heard the unvarnished crackpot philosophy of patriarch Doc, still vigorous and active at age 85, or the myriad complaints of his estranged family, each of whom has pursued radically individual lifestyles. You can't help but admire Doc and the love he has for his talented progeny, while at the same time feel the pain (and see glimpses of bright humor) in their unenviable, almost militaristic domestic life. "Surfwise" is intoxicating, and the eleventh-hour family reunion may just leave a saltwater tear in your eye.