“Soul Surfer” is a by-the-book biopic about Bethany Hamilton, the real-life teen surfer who lost an arm in a shark attack and then fought her way back to competition and a renewed sense of self. It’s an inspiring story but, as directed by Sean McNamara, not an especially inspiring movie.
Hamilton is played, blandly, by Anna Sophia Robb, and her devoted parents, less bland, are played by Dennis Quaid and Helen Hunt. The surfing footage, much of it shot off the coast of Kauai, is not bland at all. Grade: C (Rated PG for an intense accident sequence and some thematic material.)