Sunitha Patel is a beautiful Twenty-year-old woman and comes from a traditional Indian family living in Durban. She is the apple of her father’s eye who relives his own life through her successes. But Sunitha has a deep secret; a desire to surf. And surfing is not acceptable for an Indian girl, of marrying age.
Against her father’s wishes, she finally takes the plunge and starts surfing. She meets Cory, an American surfer, running away from his own demons and drug addiction. Cory shows her how to find her feet out on the water and sweeps her off her feet at the same time. But their inter-racial love and Sunitha’s forbidden passion of surfing comes into conflict with her father’s rigid beliefs. At the same time, Cory’s demons catch up with him and wreak havoc on their world.
In a bid to seek her own independence Sunitha defies her father and enters into a local surfing competition where she has to make a decision – her family or surfing? To make matters worse the competition falls on the same day her father has arranged for her to meet a successful young Gujarati guy.
But like tides that ebb and flow, her father has a change of heart when he sees her skill on the water and realizes how hard he’s been on her when she has a near-death experience.
In the end, Sunitha wins her struggle for self-expression and self-fulfilment in a society that supports conformity, gains her father’s approval and the man of her dreams.
The film stars Carishma Basday, best known for her role in Material and Greg Kriek, a veteran actor with international experience, Deep End is about a young Indian woman who has to break free from convention to pursue her passion of surfing. The film is about the conflict that comes from going on a journey of self-discovery that means defying her father’s wishes. It’s a female story that centres around a young woman’s struggle for self-expression in a society that supports conformity.
Set on the intoxicating shorelines of Durban’s Golden Mile, Deep End brings one of the world’s most popular surfing sites, Durban, to glorious life.
The inspiration for the film came from Timothy’s observation of surfing and fishing life in Durban. He saw that surfing was never aspirational for Indians in Durban and watched from afar. Beach culture is the essence of Durban and Timothy wanted to capture the conflict and longing that comes from people wanting to aspire to different things. Timothy says he wanted to tell a story set in his community with characters that are relatable and universal. “The issues they deal with are common and perennial: relationships, family and a sense of belonging. Deep End is about capturing the essence of culture and the extreme and sometimes dark side of surfing”, he says.
Deep End manages to capture the magic of the water together with the emotions and a multitude of experiences that come from one of the most diverse cities in the world. Director of Photography Ebrahim Hajee shows his skilled hand when it comes to imaginatively and beautifully crafting shots of Durban, its people and the magnificent ocean through his experience in documentaries and music videos.
With the likes of cast members some new to the screen and others more experienced such as Greg Kriek, Carishma Basday, Suraya-Rose Santos, Mahendra Raghunath, Robin Singh and Priya Lutchman, Deep End celebrates and has given a platform to local actors in South Africa. The soundtrack includes music from Durban born group Easy Freaks whose sound cannot be defined but will leave you feeling something real.
Duration of film: 93 minutes