Inspiration for anyone facing their own battles in life.
Mark Mathews’ new documentary may be titled ‘The Other Side of Fear’, but he will be the first to admit he’s spent as long as anyone in battle with that particular emotion. From a young grom afraid of any wave with size to becoming one of the most fearless big wave surfers on the planet, you don’t make that journey without facing your demons.
Unfortunately, Mark’s battle with fear didn’t end with conquering wave-size alone. The man whose nickname is ‘Chalk’ due to the seemingly fragile nature of his bones, has suffered a horrendous string of injuries throughout his career. The last of which, a grotesquely dislocated knee and a crushed artery sustained on a southern NSW reef, almost put him out of action permanently, both physically and mentally.
‘The Other Side of Fear’ documents Mark’s long and emotional road back to health after countless operations, months in hospital and bouts of deep depression threatened to consume him.
“This film shares the story of my big wave surfing career,” explains Mathews. “But more importantly, it shares the experiences that have taught me how to access the courage and resilience that it takes to face fear, overcome anxiety and embrace stress. We all have big waves to deal with in our lives but, with the right tools, any one of us can access a life beyond fear.”
‘The Other Side of Fear’ also pays tribute to the many people who played pivotal roles in Mark’s recovery, including his wife Britt Mathews, who says the film captures “the most difficult but rewarding journey of both of our lives.”
It was directed and put together by lifelong friend Macario De Souza, the man responsible for the ‘Bra Boys’ Doco and Mark’s previous film ‘Fighting Fear’. Macario says he jumped back into the chair again was not only witnessing the strength of his friend in overcoming his physical and mental injuries but also the unwavering support of his wife Britt throughout the journey, who Macario notes as the real hero of the story.
Macario also says that “Although the film is set in the world of surfing, it’s really a story of resilience, overcoming your fears and learning to love yourself. The world needs more positive stories like this right now.”