Waves of Freedom

A documentary about a surf therapy program that is transforming the lives of troubled young Maori men in New Zealand.

The film features perspectives from a probation officer, police constable, judge, medical doctor, psychologist and several young men who tell their own stories of struggle and change.

Set against the stunning backdrop of Mount Maunganui, a beach town on New Zealand's east coast, Waves of Freedom offers a rare glimpse into a relatively unknown aspect of New Zealand life and culture.

  • Bradley Hook
  • Evgeniya Ignatova
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    54 minutes 53 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    December 10, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    20,000 NZD
  • Country of Origin:
    New Zealand
  • Country of Filming:
    New Zealand
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Bradley Hook

Bradley Hook is an author, speaker and filmmaker based in New Zealand. He is the founder of Surfd.com surf mag and a partner at the Resilience Institute.

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Director Statement

As a lifelong surfer, I was fascinated to hear about surfing being used as a legitimate therapy for young men who have experienced extreme trauma and abuse. I connected with the Live for More surf therapy program in 2017 and started capturing stories both from participants and the wider community about the impact of surf therapy.

Two years later, Waves of Freedom is here.