2015 Banff Mountain Film Competition Finalists
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Across the Ice
In 2010, Sebastian Copeland and Eric McNair-Landry crossed 2300 km of the Greenland ice sheet, braved a blizzard and set a world record for the longest distance traveled in a 24 hour period on skis.
AK Girls Way
The two weeks that snowboarder Liz Daley and skier Caroline Gleich spent riding, hiking, and camping in a glacier in Alaska's Tordillo Mountains were sweet in ways no one anticipated. Join them for the simple joy of the full human-powered experience.
Antarctica: On the Edge
Traveling the coast of Antarctica by sailboat, sea kayak, small plane, on foot, and with dive gear gives writer and director Jon Bowermaster and his team a complete and beautiful portrait of a place unlike anywhere else you will ever visit.
Balloonskiing - Heimschnee
Balloonskiing is an adventurous, eco-friendly way of heli-skiing. You never know where you are going to end up skiing. The wind leads the way.
Natasha Brooks swims naked year-round in the cold mountain lakes of Snowdonia, Wales. Through this she finds solitude, grounding and a deep connection to the natural environment. Winner of the British Mountaineering Council’s 2014 Women in Adventure Film Competition.
Morag, 86, lives alone on the Isle of Harris with her three cats and twelve sheep. She was born in this house and has lived here her whole life. Cailleach is a portrait of Morag as she contemplates her next chapter and shares her unique love of life.
When pro kayaker Rafa Ortiz decides to paddle over Niagara Falls, he sets in motion a series of events leading Rafa’s team on a remarkable two-year journey from Mexican rainforest rivers to the waterfalls of the U.S. Northwest before coming to a heart-stopping climax at the iconic Niagara Falls.
Chris Bonington - Life and Climbs
One of the great mountaineers of the second half of the twentieth century - retraces the stories and adventures of a lifetime exploring and climbing the world’s mountains.
The Citadel is the new film from adventure filmmaker Alastair Lee. It follows UK alpinists Matt Helliker and Jon Bracey as they tackle one of the hardest mixed lines ever conceived, deep in the Alaskan wilderness. Impeccably shot, this North American premiere will have you hanging on the edge of your seat.
Climbing Ice: The Iceland Trifecta
An expedition into the Vatnajökull glacier in Iceland in hopes of finding unique environments in which to climb. We follow award winning photographer Tim Kemple and ice climbers Klemen Premrl & Rahel Schelb while they discover new ways to push the boundaries of climbing ice.
Borderlands. The bridge between two worlds. Where the known meets mystery. Powerful, unforgiving–and exactly what Hayden Peters was looking for. Trading the city for the daily sting of salt water on his skin, Hayden reveals how life on the coast brings him balance like no other place on earth could.
Climbers David Lama and Conrad Anker have climbed the first ascent of Latent Core in Zion National Park, Utah, USA. The guys completed the route on the imposing Temple of Sinawava wall during four days of climbing together. This climb marks David and Conrad's first effort together.
Chasing curiosity can lead us down a dangerous, challenging, and frightening path. It can also lead us to have the greatest experiences of our lives. "Curiosity" follows the stories of team athletes Rory Bosio, Timothy Olson & Hal Koerner in their constant pursuit of exploration.
The lights haven't gone out yet! Sweetgrass Productions is back with Darklight, a film that takes viewers back into a world of light and color. Supported by innovative television manufacturer Philps TV, this is the third collaboration between the soulful filmmakers at Sweetgrass Productions and Swedish creative house Ahlstrand and Wållgren. Follow professional mountain bikers Graham Agassiz, Matt Hunter, and Matty Miles on a mindbending night ride through the moonscapes of Southern Utah to the Ewok forests of the Pacific Northwest.
Snowboarding is more than a sport to world-renowned freerider Xavier De Le Rue. it's a quest for adventure. De Le Rue and Samuel Anthamatten use paragliders to scout and access the biggest lines in the Northern Hemisphere, and film it all from the air.
In hyperactive Salt Lake City ski community, the Dorais brothers unique brand of masochism has made them local legends. While ski-racing and trail running are constant for the brothers, it’s the bonds to family and each other are what define them.
The odds are low, the risks are high - photographer Reuben Krabbe is determined to capture a photo of a skier in front of the 2015 solar eclipse in Svalbard. But the weather's bad, the guide is sketchy, the pressure is massive, and the skiers just want to ski.
FIRST ASCENT - KUNYANG CHHISH EAST
July 18, 2013. A story of chopped fingers, fun, friendship and the First Ascent of Kunyang Chhish East (7,400m). Following the rules of true alpine style Hansjörg Auer, Matthias Auer and Simon Anthamatten embark on an adventure for the summit and for survival on Kunyang Chhish East.
She’s been trad climbing for only three years, but The North Face & Petzl Athlete, Emily Harrington didn’t let that sway her from the magnetic pull of El Capitan’s ‘Golden Gate’ (5.13 VI). 6 days and 40 pitches later, she stood on the summit with broken skin, aching muscles and a smile that stretched across Yosemite Valley.
The Great Alone
The Iditarod may be the hardest race in the world. The Great Alone captures the inspiring comeback story of champion sled dog racer Lance Mackey. From his sunniest days as a boy to his darkest hours trapped in the arms of substance abuse, dog sledding just may be his road to salvation.
A spellbinding account of environmentalism, obsession and myth, Hadwin’s Judgement chronicles logging engineer and survivalist Grant Hadwin’s resolute struggle to reconcile what he regarded as an intolerable and conspiratorial affront—not just to the land, but to humanity as well.
Haida Gwaii: On The Edge Of The World
This hopeful story of the pristine Haida Gwaii archipelago shows how the world view of this ancient society is co-mingling with that of progressive newcomers to create a sustainable world that may survive the historically-devastating effects of rampant logging and fishing.
Hunters of the South Seas: The Whale Hunters of Lamalera
Lamalera is a village perched on the rocky slopes of an active island volcano, it is home to people who have adapted to ocean life like nowhere else. Will Mllard heads to the small Indonesian village to discover how the merge to modernity may not be in everyone's best interest.
Into the Light
After a 170 m free hanging descent in the Majlis al Jinn, a huge cave located in Oman, the climbers Stefan Glowacz and Chris Sharma climb back into the light from the deepest point of the cave.
Island of the Marble Glaciers
Imagine an unexplored island... Tucked away in the Patagonian archipelago.... An island battered by the Roaring Forties... Howling gales… endless rain… and the nearest port is 250 km away… If you come to this big rock, you're either stranded, insane, or... a caver. Because there's limestone here... and that means caves.
Thanks to his perserverence, the Italian Simone Moro has written pages of alpinism history, above all of winter alpinism on peaks over 8000 meters high. I-VIEW also tells us about his adventure as a helicopter pilot and his dream of bringing helicopter rescue to the Himalayas.
Japan by Van
There are no ski areas on the peaks above the historic village of Shirakawa-go, but it’s surrounded by great skiing—as long as you’re willing to hike for it. Join Carston Oliver, Eliel Hindert, Pep Fujas and Makoto Takeishi as they take to the hills to discover the meaning of “Deep” in the Shirakawa backcountry.
At the age of 30, Joe Riis has achieved everyone’s childhood dream. A celebrated National Geographic wildlife photographer, he spends his life embarking on adventures to the wildest places on earth, often for months on end, to observe and photograph animals. But like all of us, he has doubts. Joe is the celebration of one man's journey.
Juma of Itanda
As a boy, Juma watched the first rafting group paddle to Itanda, the Class V rapid named after his village on the Victoria Nile in Uganda. From that spark, Juma's passion for the river grew, eventually leading to his current role as Director of Operations at the country's largest raft outfit. However, a dam project threatens his dream.
Jumbo Wild is the story of the battle between local grassroots activists and a charming but megalomaniacal Italian developer over turning the pristine Jumbomassif and crucial grizzly bear breeding habitat into a 4 season glacier-skiing megaresort.
Pawel Wysoczański follows in the footsteps of Jerzy Kukuczka and reconstructs his path to the summit. Jurek is a brilliant blend of highs and lows, of the grandeur of the Himalayas and the gray everyday reality of life during the decline of communist Poland. The eponymous protagonist seems to be someone who was formed equally by both extremes. He was a simple boy ennobled by metaphysical longing and heroic aspirations. During the telling of his story about Kukuczka, Wysoczański has his head in the clouds, but, when necessary, he can also come back down to earth. Through various anecdotes, Jurek paints a picture for us of everyday reality in the Himalayas, while also providing an answer to the persistent question of why vodka is better than hashish. The participation of Reinhold Messner - Kukuczka's long-time rival, who always spoke about him with nothing but respect - brings added value to Wysoczański's documentary.
K2: Touching the sky
In the summer of 1986, several dozen alpinists from all over the world met to climb K2. Very soon the season transforms into a series of tragic events called “black summer”, leaving 13 climbers dead. Almost 30 years later the children of acclaimed alpinists, who died on K2,undertake an expedition to answer the question: what is the price of passion.
Kayaking the Aleutians
2 women attempt a world first paddle along the remote and stormy Aleutian island chain. In a nail biting adventure, the friends are swept away from land by unknown currents, approached by bears & grounded by headwinds. Over 101 days, they gain a rare insight into themselves & the lives of the few people who live in this harsh, beautiful landscape.
In 2014, Kilian Jornet won the Hard Rock 100 mile run through the San Juan’s of Colorado. Along the way he stopped at Kroger’s Canteen – an aid station perched on a tiny ledge, 13,100ft above sea level. This is a story about that aid station, about the people that make it happen, and about the spirit one can only find at The Hard Rock 100.
The Last Dragons
An intimate glimpse at North America's Eastern Hellbender, an ancient salamander that lives as much in myth as in reality.... and in many waters, myths are all that remain of these sentinel stream-dwellers.
A Line Across the Sky
Long considered impossible, coveted by many and attempted by a few, the Fitz Traverse has fueled the imaginations of climbers in Patagonia for decades. Tracing the iconic skyline of Cerro Fitz Roy and its six satellite peaks, it spans four miles and 13,000 feet across snow and ice-covered rock, with epic route finding and endless rapelling. Seizing their chance during a rare extended weather window, Tommy Caldwell and Alex Honnold went big. The pair completed the first ascent in a five-day push during February 2014
Living Rivers - Surf
Kevin Benhardt has forged the new and emerging river surfing scene in Montana. He speaks briefly to the awe of the sport, and to his connection to the river and then the visual show of what makes river surfing such a unique story ensues.
Matterhorn, The Birdwoman's Dream
Géraldine Fasnacht is a wingsuit pilote that nurtures a dream since she learned to fly , the dream to be the first wingsuit pilote to jump from the top of the Matterhorn. Technological and technical advances have enabled her , along with her friend Julien Meyer, to achieve this world first on June 7, 2014 .
Memory Trap: The Herd that Wouldn’t Disappear
Allan Code, Yukon filmmaker, goes on a northern journey to Yukon and Alaska’s most remote wilderness areas. For a year, Code follows the FortyMile Caribou Herd in its migration in order to tell their story of survival and how tra¬ditional knowledge and science saved them from extinction in 1970.
After suffering dramatic set backs in their lives, three close friends who are among the world's best climbers battle their inner demons and nature's harshest elements in an attempt to confront the Shark's Fin on Mount Meru, the most technically complicated and dangerous peak in the Himalayas, one that has never been scaled to completion.
Mile for Mile
Ultrarunners Krissy Moehl, Jeff Browning and Luke Nelson run 106 miles through the newly opened Patagonia Park in Chile, to celebrate and highlight Conservacion Patagonica’s efforts to re-wild and protect this vast landscape.
Moving the Giants: An Urgent Plan to Save the Planet
Twenty years ago, angels came to tell David Milarch that the earth was in trouble. The solution, they told him, was to clone the champion trees of the world - the largest, the hardiest, the ones that had survived millennia and were most resilient to climate change. So he did.
What began as a dream one night led adventure photographer
Krystle Wright down an unexpected four and a half year journey to capture the most elusive photograph she'd ever taken.
Natural World: The Bat Man of Mexico
David Attenborough narrates the story of Rodrigo Medellin, Mexico's very own 'Bat Man'. Since he first kept vampire bats in his bathroom as a child, Rodrigo has dedicated his life to saving them. Now Mexico's most famous export - tequila - is at stake. Rodrigo's beloved lesser long-nosed bat is crucial to the liquor - pollinating the plants the drink is made from. To save both, Rodrigo must track the bats' epic migration across Mexico - braving hurricanes, snakes, Mayan tombs, and seas of cockroaches. The threats are very real for not only Rodrigo and the bats, but also for anyone with a taste for tequila.
Nature: The Last Orangutan Eden
Join ecologist and adventurer Chris Morgan as he travels deep into the jungles of Sumatra to uncover the mysteries of Asia's only great ape - the orangutan.
NOATAK: Return to the Arctic
40 years after their first visit to the Noatak River in Alaska's wild and spectacular Brooks Range, two adventurers in their 70's explore a lifetime of outdoor experiences and what adventures await them..
One Seventy Eight: Forging a Balance
One Seventy Eight documents the completion of Henrik Westling's quest to climb and ski 178 peaks in central Sweden. Along the way, he hopes to gain a little perspective.
Operation Moffat takes inspiration and wit from the colorful climbing life of Britian’s First Female Mountain Guide Gwen Moffat. Writer Claire Carter and Filmmaker Jen Randall scramble, swim and barefoot climb through Gwen’s landscapes, grappling with her preference for mountains over people, adventure over security, wilderness over tick lists.
After a coal mine disaster kills her brother, a pro-coal
activist joins forces with a tree-hugging environmentalist to take on the most
dangerous coal company in America. As the coal industry faces extinction, will
our two heroines be able to heal their wounded community?
Paddle for the North
On an adventure of a lifetime, six young guys paddle to some
of the most remote rivers in North America.
It's a 1,500 km, 63- day mission to truly discover the secrets of the
north and to show the world why some places are worth preserving before they
are changed forever.
Fiordland - the most remote and inhospitable corner of New Zealand. In this wild landscape, a team of rangers are fighting to save the nation's rarest creatures from an invisible - and unstoppable - menace. Can they achieve the impossible?
Redemption: The James Pearson Story
James Pearson is one of the UK’s most famous climbers. When the grading of his routes is questioned,
controversy haunts him and Pearson has to face his demons to fight for his
place back in the climbing community.
The Rocky Mountain Moto Tour
A skier and snowboarder find simpllicty in the method of travel and explore the Canadian Rockies in a new light. Watch as Callum Pettit and Mark Carter travel by motorcycle and ride some of the Rockies most iconic big mountain lines.
The Rocky Mountains Traverse
In the summer of 2014, two of the world’s finest adventurers
met in McBride, BC and set flight for the US border, pushing the sport of
paragliding or more precisely vol-bivy or “fly camping”, as they flew 640
kilometres along and above the Canadian Rockies. Will Gadd and Gavin McClurg were named
National Geographic Adventurers of the Year in 2014 for their 35-day
journey. In the new film The Rocky Mountains Traverse, their pure
elation at the adventure can’t help but make you smile
Travis Winn has been running rivers in China for 15 years. He's achieved first descents, but has also watched rivers disappear behind dams. Now he's founded a rafting company to bring Chinese to see their rivers before they're gone. Salween Spring is Travis' meditation on change, personal struggle, and kayaking along China's frontier.
The Search for Freedom
THE SEARCH FOR FREEDOM is the story of a cultural revolution fueled by the human desire to live in the moment and do what makes you feel the most alive. This is a visceral, visual experience told through the eyes some of the brightest pioneers, legends, visionaries and champions of surfing, snowboarding, skiing, skateboarding, mountain biking.
Seele aus Stein (Soul of Stone)
Bernd Arnold, the iconic barefoot climber, has logged over 980 first ascents in his 67 years. Now facing the phase of decline, he reflects on the power of psyche in overcoming fear.
A brawl on Everest? Director Jennifer Peedom set out to uncover tension in the 2014 Everest climbing season from the Sherpas' point of view. Instead, she captured a tragedy when an avalanche killed 16, all Sherpas. Sherpa tells how the Sherpas united after the tragedy in the face of fierce opposition, to reclaim the mountain they call Chomolungma.
Showdown at Horseshoe Hell
How hard can it be? 24 hours of Horseshoe Hell is a climbing competition that has you climbing day and night, and racking up points for your climbs as you go. You just have to beat Alex Honnold. From the Reel Rock 10 Tour.
Sierra Quitiquit How Did I get Here : Empowerment
From humble beginnings, complex family dynamics and tragic, life-changing events, to her unlikely rise to success in two very different worlds: high fashion modeling and skiing. “How Did I Get Here” is a coming-of-age story, full of adventure, exploration, heartbreak, growth and inspiration.
Streif - One Hell of a Ride
Five downhill ski-racers offer a glimpse into the soul of extreme athletes as they take on the Super Bowl of Skiing in Kitzbühel, Austria.
Mongolia is undergoing rapid development. Tempted by the lure of easy money, Purevjav decides to captures and sell a pair of wolf cubs. But he also realizes that he has crossed a sacred boundary.
TALLURUTIUP TARIUNGA: Lancaster Sound
Tallurutiup Tariunga, the Inuktitut name for Lancaster Sound, is one of the Arctic's richest marine habitats, an area of stunning beauty and deep cultural significance. Located at the eastern entrance to the Northwest Passage, Lancaster Sound's abundance has sustained Inuit communities for centuries. This film is based on a poem written by Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory, an artist who lives in Iqaluit, Nunavut.
Four men and 16 wild mustangs set off on a 5000 kilometre journey across the American West from Mexico to Canada. In the spirit of true adventure, whiskey is drunk, tempers fly, tragedy strikes, and the bonds of friendship hold fast. But can the journey help save the plight of the wild horses whom roam on public lands? Only time will tell.
Underground Movement: Cave Diving in Jämtland
On the Jämtland mountains, a group of spelunkers and cave divers are exploring what proved to be Sweden’s longest underwater cave. Work has been going on for seven eventful years in a struggle against the elements. Meters of deep snow, ice and cold are some of the difficulties faced by the group. This is our story!
Voyagers Without Trace
In 1938, three Parisians push off from a Wyoming riverbank to attempt the first kayak exploration of the wild Green and Colorado rivers—and they record their journey, creating the first color adventure film. But the reels go unseen for 75 years, until Ian McCluskey spots the trio on a roadside marker, sending him on his own adventure.
The Warmth of Winter
Outside, the snow flies and the wind roars. But here, quiet and safe in a candlelit womb, the warmth and the wood wrap around you like a blanket, and the mind melts into reflections of days gone by. Take shelter from the storm. Sit down by the fire, have a drink, and take a load off. There is no warmth like a warmth found in winter.
Three of the world’s most renowned BASE jumpers, Jokke Sommer, Espen Fadnes and Ludovic Woerth embark on an adventure around the world seeking out unique and challenging places to wingsuit proximity fly and BASE jumping.
Without an Image
When adventurer Mike Libecki set off to find an unclimbed peak in Afghanistan, his friends and family voiced their concerns. What Mike discovered amidst the mayhem was peaceful people, rich history, and a fledgling tourism industry plagued by the effects left over from a Taliban takeover more than a decade ago.
Women's Speed Ascent
Mayan Smith-Gobat and Libby Sauter knew that the women's speed record for the ascent of The Nose on El Cap was their's for the taking. Crushing the old record after just a few days of attempts, Mayan and Libby put their names in the record book of the infamous route in Yosemite National Park.
An open-pit mining boom is underway in northwest British Columbia. The size & location of the mines--at the headwaters of major salmon rivers flowing across the border into AK--has Alaskans concerned.