If you’re surfing in Cuba, you’ll need to keep one eye on the beach as well as the waves. Surfing in Cuba is illegal, which is everyday life for surfers like Frank and Yaya. Surf culture here only takes place in the shadows, so official competitions are impossible. In Cuba of all places, where sport and especially Olympic disciplines are typically highly valued, surfing is not recognized by the state as a sport.
HAVANA LIBRE follows Frank and Yaya for several years, starting in 2016, and provides deep insight into the illegal subculture of surfers in Cuba. The film documents their campaign for the legalization of their sport, their longing for additional freedoms, and the obstacles facing the younger generation.