The discovery of new surf spots, especially big-wave spots, has become a cottage industry in the past 15 years. After Maverick's blew up, so did places like Cortez Bank, 100 miles dead west off San Diego (putting it in the middle of the ocean) and Ghost Tree, a long hook off the 18th hole at Pebble Beach. Maverick's chronicler Grant Washburn got the call in 2000 about a spot called Dungeons in South Africa off the Cape of Good Hope, and wandered out to take a look. He found
potential, beginning a waiting game to find out what the spot was made of. That's no surprise: All surfers, but mostly big-wave surfers, wait, almost constantly, for good waves to arrive. But when Washburn goes to check the surf at Dungeons, he's traveling halfway around the world, and he gets skunked, repeatedly, for seven years. That wait is captured in his new movie, Quest for Fear, along with a lot of filler shots of Maverick's until Dungeons finally turns on. While the film has a home-movie vibe and lacks the sheen and impact of Stacey Peralta's Riding Giants, it does capture the thrill of the hunt (and a director who actually rides the giants). Quest for Fear screens for six days, but the night to go is Feb. 7, when Washburn and friends will be on hand for a Q&A, "waves permitting." That means if a big-wave spot happens to be cracking somewhere in the world right then, no one will stick around for a Q&A, but the pool of surfers who might show up includes Greg Long, Twiggy Baker, Jeff Clark, Matt Ambrose, Shawn Rhodes, Mike and Sarah Gerhardt, John Raymond, and Randy Cone.
Feb. 21-12, 7 & 9:35 p.m., 2008