The Drifter Trailer

posted by / News / July 31, 2009

A sneak peek at Poor Specimen’s new Rob Machado project: The Drifter.

Drifter Trailer from Poor Specimen on Vimeo.

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  • Jeff

    I saw Rob surf for the 1st time in 1991 down at Cardiff, when I was 11. From that moment I’ve seen his career go in so many directions, this being the most enjoyable to watch by far. I can tell Taylor and crew logged some serious hours on this one, and it definitely shows in the production value. Congrats to everyone involved, without a doubt Rob’s will be one of the iconic surf stories that people will be talking about for years…

  • Dude Rob


    This is Rob Machado’s free spirit here and I invite you on a cosmic journey of manufactured hippiness. I made this film with wanna be hacks and it shows. ENJOY THE TRIP MAN! ….Does anyone have a joint?

  • Kim

    I would run away from that voice on the other end of the phone as well. go rob go go go

  • Todd

    There are some people that come across as being very authentic and humble. Rob is one of them and it seems that his surf celebrity has not gotten to his head as much as it has with others. Perhaps it is his age, having children, or dealing with the difficulties of so much time away from home, but he has developed a maturity that many 50 year old adolescents never achieve. My desire for him is that he finds what he needs as God reveals it to him.

  • lonely

    typical surfer…”hey Dude”

  • lonely

    wow rob…how original…get a job and put on a suit, put the toys away and grow up!!

  • lonely

    dumb surfers….

  • Chauncy Peppertooth

    Insted of spending time with his kids, rob travels around indo with a huge production crew. If he was truly a soul surfer he would do this project with no cameras. this guy is not cool he dosent look at you and dosent say hi to anyone just stares at you with his almighty eyes as if his shit dosent stink. does anybody know if mr groovy pants is going to make a donation from the profit of his film to help the local communities he exploited?

  • Xabi

    Hey any knows the name of the song????


  • oregonisradical

    and where is his wife and kids? a real family man huh?

  • AjaxMcGregor

    Can’t wait to see this movie premier.

    It’s great to see the amount of effort going into some of the surf movies these days. Like Thomas Campbell working on his last one for five years, the 3-D madness for that new IMAX film…and Taylor using camera gear that filmmakers like James Cameron and Steven Soderberg are just now adopting (Red One camera). It’s truly cutting edge stuff. The hours, travel, technology and dedication that went into making The Drifter is simply amazing…considering a surf market movie has nowhere near the returns of a mainstream film. I’m hoping all the best success and support for this project — both Taylor and Rob are deserving of our respect. (This is an interesting book-end to a career that started together as well…one at home in North County, the other in their adopted ex-pat home of Indo.)

    Hey, how come that website listed at the end of the movie isn’t working yet? Get on it guys! I want some more!

  • Mik

    Rob is the George Harrison of Surf Culture. Amazing charisma, and style, w/o attitude. He emulates a natural coolness that I personally admire. Looking forward to getting this Vid for the surf library.

  • kevin

    Taylor is a fraud! I thought he had integrity until i stumbled upon this website he stole their logo, entire look and even their content! WTF?

  • Rob

    Wow. that looks just like his new project

  • Eric

    I don’t know about this…. the surfing and cinematography look amazing, but Rob’s “character” seems like a total fraud. How do you get “lost” in Indo with the most well funded film crew in the industry and a wife and kids back home. Did he get a divorce and split or something to re~discover himself, or is this a huge push to develop a hyper~commercialized myth… cementing Rob as the ultimate soul surfer to appeal to a specific demographic of consumers who are “rebelling” against competitive, main stream surfing by buying Rob’s signature products instead of Kelly’s. I’m Glad Rob could make it back from the heart of darkness in Indo to surf the US open, sign autographs, and even commentate for the event. Not to mention the flood of ad’s that there’s been of Rob all over the mags, and the colossal portraits of his smile on Main street in HB. I really want to see the movie, because I’m sure the surfing is incredible, but I think I might throw up at the pretentiousness of the voice overs and journal entries of our feral protagonist. Hey Taylor… Here’s an idea for your next comedy sketch for Rob Machado. Do an Apocalypse now sketch with Rob going into the deep Jungle to kill a Walter Kurtz type character…. doing voice overs and journal entries the whole way…. The Horror…. the horror.

  • Haters

    Seriously WTF!!!! I was just at the open in the competitor booth watching Rob with his kids. We was only separate from him when he was surfing a heat. He has his issues I’m sure like any of you. His ability to provide for his family is reliant on his Marketability. He is stuck in a crux between the need to provide and be marketable and the desire to split. Everyone of you self righteous kunts know that feeling as well as anyone, but Robs just being honest about it. Like him or not he’s a phenom and has made surfing more interesting. And don’t point harass people for how they APPEAR to handle family life. You have NO idea what goes on behind the scenes. Karma can be a bitch so watch your mouth.

  • Mik

    I like the look… I am not into judging the “substance”. Machado is a surfer to the core. You can see it in everything he does. So he has feet in 2 worlds? In reality, they are both on the same planet. In fact, I think that is where the rest of us need to be, cognizant of Nature, and cognizant of tech. They need to be synchronized with each other, rather than at odds. We need to include the effect of our “products” along with the look of them, and the money we want to make. From cars to bars to jars to food to mood—it can ll be good! Also kudos to Taylor for appreciating other cultures. Sipping was a breakthrough mentality: no hype, just beautiful waves and places and faces, and sounds. Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet. Tweet. Repeet.

  • Eric

    I don’t think anyone is questioning the legitimacy of how Rob makes a living. His level of surfing and contribution to the sport is undeniable, and worth every penny he’s earned, but come on, this “documentary” is over dramatized to the max. In the trailer he talks about paddling for another island and giving out half way ???? That’s a death wish if you’re alone in those waters… unless you have a team of jet skis, a fully staffed yacht, helicopter for the aerial shots, and the worlds best film crew to “document” the attempt like I’m sure Taylor & company had… hell I would go for it under those circumstances. Do you really think his wife would have appreciated it if he tried that kind of a stunt ALONE and didn’t pull it off ????

  • OregonNotRadical

    Hey Oregon…His wife left him, you dick. I can see how people could hate on this cause of the camera crew on a supposedly soul mission but Rob’s a rad guy and a good person. I doubt he cares about the money side of it. It’s always the guys that wish they had something that hate on someone for having it. I’m sure this is a beautiful film. And why do people on these forums always spell so badly?

  • chauncey peppertooth

    Dear Eric from two posts up…i want to meet you you are the man! you couldnt have worded it more perfectly you should be a writer! thanks for this insight on mr. commericialized hippy
    (Soul Surfers Against Sell Outs)

  • oregonisradical

    “Haters”, would you like to explain just what has been “going on behind the scenes”. You have offered a pretty pathetic logic as to Robs dilemma between the industry and his desire to split from it. As a father myself, I understand the need to provide, but not at the expense of my morals. When it comes down to it, we all need to make decisions about how best to do that, and that choice may be the most valuable lesson we can leave our children. The apparent frustration from many commentators stems from the inherent conflict in such a production as Drifter, and as such, limits rational peoples ability to buy the image that Rob has promoted. Granted, I like it better than some images, but don’t give me a pitty story about how torn he is, if that is the case. Like it or hate it, as a father or mother, no success outside the home can make up for failure in the home. And by the way, you may need to read up on the definition of Karma…. while watching your own mouth.

  • The Peoples Voice

    Dear Rob,

    I agree with Eric.

    Maybe Robs last words in the trailer “We dream of the perfect wave, the perfect job, the perfect house, and when you get there, we dream of something else.” are really saying something about what the surf industry has become; a capitalist industry full or rampant branding and materialism. Rob seriously listen to me (just some random guy from cyber space), if there are actual reasons you see to take such path as your movie portrays against commercialism then just drop off the map, drop out of the magazines, don’t make movies… just go live. But I can’t see how you were just “drifting” along with a taylor steel film crew a hurleys (owned by Nike who is a user of child labor!) budget, while making sure to sign your autographs too. This trailer made me pretty sick to my stomach realizing just how infiltrated the surf industry has become with image marketing and exploitation.

  • http://NA Nathan Myers

    First: to Kevin and Rob saying Taylor “stole” his website design — guys, that’s a standard word-press blog template. There are literally thousands of blog sites out there using the exact same template. Don’t be stupid.

    To the other dudes railing against the irony of filming Rob’s “aloneness,” well, speaking as one who was there during much of the project (and not just talking smack behind an anonymous screen-name), I’ll first say: yes, you’re right, it’s not real. Guys, it’s a MOVIE. Did you actually try to order the products from Taylor’s Campaign skits? Casue those weren’t real either. The fact that you’re even arguing over this just shows what a good job Steele did suspending your disbelief. Are you going onto other forums arguing about the possibility of Brad Pitt actually aging backwards in Benjamin Button? That didn’t happen either. They used make-up and special effect, probably made with child labor. The only difference with this movie is that Rob did all his own stunts, rode his own motorbike, slept outdoors the entire production and lived his character more than Viggo Mortenson lived his Aragon character for the 3 years they filmed Lord of the Rings. Yes, Rob is a paid professional surfer. He gets paid for it. Is this a revelation to you? At the same time, he’s a nice guy and a family man and a public figure who’s personal life sometimes gets confused with his public persona… and these are some of the topics addressed in this movie. But in the end, it’s still just a movie. Stop hating and either enjoy it or ignore it. It’s not meant to prove anything to you about Rob’s personality…it’s meant to entertain you and get you excited about surfing and traveling and doing something other than sitting in Internet chat rooms talking shit about things you don’t really know behind your screen names.

    Take a breath guys. It’s just a movie.

    And sorry if I’m ranting about this…sometimes these silly chats get me all worked up. I’ll take a breath too. Ahh, that’s better.

  • Mikey

    the reality is any image is a sham if it is used to denote some sort of lifestyle or culture, it is commercial, it is projected in an effort to sell its self. ie Donovan Frakenreiter etc!

    Don’t get me wrong, i dig Rob & i am hang’in for the movie too, but everything in this life post 2000 is controlled and manipulated. If you wanted to do what Rob did in reality it would take money, it is not cheap to tune, turn on and drop out, but because we all listen to the pied piper of work, eat, sleep, it can not be a reality for the most of us poor worker ants. To really make a difference, to be a non commerical entity and a person of principle would mean a life lived off the radar to the extent that know one knows you exist, cause you would be unmarketable and no souch person can exist in this age!

    There’s a place in my brain that inhabits fantasy and escape all the time and when i watch this movie i will gladly inhabit it again, because reality sucks……….so ride on Rob, none of us really have a choice and those that mock you are just can’t get it!

  • K Dog

    when does this movie come out i’m trying to watch it so bad

  • chris

    I am looking forward to seeing it, and I dig Robs surfing style, but I think a lot of criticisms of it above are probably spot on. There is a huge amount of hypocrisy with quiksilver millionaires jetting in and patronising the locals culture with no idea of their daily struggles, talking about their soul surfing with their quiver of 20 boards and film crews. For instance the message on his phone in the preview says “I dont know where I am?” – huh? If you’re off the beaten track your phone has no reception. And why take your phone.

    And I hope this isn’t a Hollywood type imitation of the surfing life with none of the substance, but I guess in order to film the journey properly you have to have some degree of commercialisation. I hope some of the proceeds go to the local communities, it is their waves these guys are surfing after all.

    On the flip side Nathan is right above – after all this is just a movie. I have never met Rob, so wont judge him except on his surfing, which rocks. Hes making money, and surfing the best waves on the planet. I’m pretty jealous of that. I loved Sipping Jetstreams and hope this movie is as good, and gets me all amped about the great sport of surfing

  • surfer steve

    this one goes out to Chauncy Peppertooth…you have no clue, you dont know Rob and I have always had awsome interactions with Rob,Ive ran into him multilble times, gas station,movie premiers,surfer polls ect nothing but cool and non ego. sounds like your the one that has a totall perseption problem…go find someone else to hate on…kook!

  • J

    Rob donates so much to Indonesia and the communities there. He really cares about the place. Other than that who cares about his private life. Thats why it is private. Also i’m not sure how true this is but I am pretty sure that he went out by himself and then came back with this story and then they documented it afterwards. Might be true, might not be but every one needs to chill out and stop talking about the guy like you know him persoanlly

  • invincible summer

    i saw the film two days ago when taylor and rob premiered it in SF. i’ve read all of your comments. a couple of things:

    it’s a beautifully shot and edited surf film that inspires your surfing and your soul. it would be unfortunate to assume that rob did not have an authentic experience simply, because he was filmed and funded. during the Q & A portion of the night, rob and taylor spoke candidly about the film. taylor mentioned that hurley gave them complete creative license to make whatever kind of movie they wanted and no deadline. which is unheard of, really. he said they really didn’t know what kind of film they were going to make at first, and that in the beginning, they just shot straight surfing footage. it wasn’t until a couple months in, that rob handed over his journal and taylor realized they were so focused on the surfing that they were missing everything else, like the cultural interactions and, of course, rob’s own personal journey. like i said, it’s a film. so, it is inevitable that there will be some contrived moments. however, it’s clear that both rob’s outward and inward explorations are real.

    also, if you watch the film, you learn that a tribe befriends rob while he is living in isolation and they invite him into their world. rob is struck by the fact that they must walk 2+ miles to get water, which they can only carry in small quantities. so, he contributes both money and manual labor to help build them a well that would provide the entire tribe with water.

    another thing we learned during the Q & A is that rob’s family traveled to indo for months at a time at different points while he was filming.

    the last thing i want to say is this: everyone dreams of getting paid to do what they love. rob honors that dream – his reality – with grace and humility. and he always has.

  • nesurf

    Well after watching the drifter, I have to say i was more than dissapointed. The movie was built up with so much hype and it was not even close to a good surf film.In the whole movie there was only about ten mins of surf footage. And the scenes were recreated making the whole movie and his journey feel fake. As a big fan of robs and his idea of soul surfing. I have noticed that he is doing just the opposite of what he wants people to think of him. U cannot go through a single surf magizine without seeing a picture of him promoting one of his products. I mean I cannot even check the surf report on surfline now with seeing a advertisement of him and his sandals lol. Is making tons of money on surfing being a soul surfer???? Who knows????/

  • hobie83

    Umm, I wish Machado was single.

  • H.

    I saw him at the airport with wife and kids. He seems like a very happy family man. Everyone needs to provide for their families, even soul surfers.

  • Matt

    Nice comment “Lonely”, (Put away the toys, put on a suit and get a job)????? WTF??
    Sounds like you lead an exciting life. Maybe that’s why your name is “Lonely”
    It’s all goog though, we definitely don’t want your kind in the water anyway.

  • cruzerHI

    exactly what i was gonna say to all these guys but you beat me to it. rite on bro

  • Scripps surfer

    I’m sorry, but presenting oneself as a soul surfer and doing a photo spread in Vogue magazine are mutually exclusive.

    It was lame when Buzzy did it many years ago and it’s just as lame today….

    Yes, Rob, Buzzy and Laird are true watermen but Vogue, come on.

  • antique restoration listings

    Seriously WTF!!!! I was just at the open in the competitor booth watching Rob with his kids. We was only separate from him when he was surfing a heat. He has his issues I’m sure like any of you. His ability to provide for his family is reliant on his Marketability. He is stuck in a crux between the need to provide and be marketable and the desire to split. Everyone of you self righteous kunts know that feeling as well as anyone, but Robs just being honest about it. Like him or not he’s a phenom and has made surfing more interesting. And don’t point harass people for how they APPEAR to handle family life. You have NO idea what goes on behind the scenes. Karma can be a bitch so watch your mouth.

  • NSB living

    Chauncy Peppertooth, and Eric… you have no clue. Typical Kooks, dont know what they are talking about and having nothing better to so they hop online a ramble about someone who theyknow nothing about. Wish i could say I’m surprised, but sadly no. You obviously have no sense of what surfing is, and prob didnt even watch the movie, I own it and watch it all the time, he donate tons of money for a well which he HIMSELF helped build, please know what you are talking about before you put others and us REAL surfers down…

  • Dori

    Didn’t see anyone answer this: The song they used on the trailer is “Carolina Drama” By The Raconteurs. You can find it on the album “Consolers Of The Lonely”

  • Frank Castle

    At the end of the day, Rob rips harder than any of you sorry ass muthafuckas.