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Bezerker.A156688.Posters-PROOF

Satan and Adam

One day, in the 1980s, a young white man, badly bruised by a failed affair of the heart, finds himself in Harlem and stops to listen to a street musician playing the blues. Nervous that he is the sole white face to be seen in any direction but compelled by the force of the street performer’s music, he asks if he can play along on his harmonica. Thus is born a most unlikely but enduring partnership. No less unlikely, the almost inconceivable course of that partnership’s trajectory is tracked by the filmmakers through its entire 22-year history. (USA, 2018, 79 min.)

Friday Night Films

MF18-STILL-A-Letter-to-Congress5 2017 / Duration: 3 mins
Directed by: Christopher Newman

A Letter to Congress

Christopher Newman’s short, lyrical visual poem was inspired by and is an homage to Wallace Stegner’s 1960 “Letter to Congress,” in which the writer advocated for the preservation of the wilderness that then remained. “Something will have gone out of us as a people if we ever let the remaining wilderness be destroyed,” Stegner wrote. In hindsight, the 1960s were hopeful; today, the exhortation is more urgent than ever.

2018 / Duration: 16 mins
Directed by: Joey Schusler, Aidan Haley, Ben Page

RJ Ripper

Rajesh Magar has been obsessed with bikes since he was a small child growing up in Kathmandu, Nepal. When the other kids were studying, he’d be dreaming about, designing and drawing bikes. As the son of a construction worker and housemaid, however, a bike wasn’t easy to come by. Undeterred, he built one, a clunky Frankenstein, but a mountain bike nonetheless. He started racing, and his drive and raw talent got noticed, leading to a job as a mountain bike guide and a path to professional racing. Today, Nepal’s National Champion is living proof that it pays to stick to your passion, no matter how implausible it seems.

2017 / Duration: 15 mins
Directed by: Charles Post, Forest Woodward, Max Lowe

Sky Migration

Twice a year a river of raptors soars overhead between British Columbia and Argentina on their seasonal migrations. Ecologist Charles Post joins them for part of their journey south through the rugged sagebrush-covered canyons of Nevada’s Goshute and New Mexico’s Manzano mountains. Workers with Hawkwatch International have been counting, measuring, banding and marveling at Cooper’s hawks, red-tailed hawks and golden eagles for the last 30 years. The birds’ fierce eyes and powerful wingspans indicate they, as well as the animals they prey on, are doing well. But for conservation to succeed, there must be a global effort. It takes the entire Western Hemisphere to raise a hawk.

2018 / Duration: 6 mins
Directed by: Allison Otto

Felix

Twice a month for the last 40 years, Felix Belmont has hosted a radio show on KVNF in the small town of Paonia, Colorado, spinning big band music of the ‘30s and ‘40s. Today, at 99 years old, he is believed to be the world’s oldest public radio host. In this endearing short film, Belmont shares the ingredients to life well-lived: a great love affair, a rich relationship with music and just the right amount of top-shelf scotch.

2018 / Duration: 17 mins
Directed by: Michelle Smith

The Frenchy

Jaques Houot, 82, may just have found the fountain of youth. The Carbondale, Colorado-based French ski racer, downhill mountain biker, road cyclist and incorrigible flirt is the embodiment of joi de vivre. Houot has survived some two dozen close calls, including avalanches, cancer, car accidents, a heart attack and even attempted murder. As a survivor, he explains, he tries to enjoy every day he has, ripping through his mountains with his signature catchphrase, “No problem!” “When you laugh, you add one extra hour on your life. I’m going to die very old, because I love to laugh,” he says.

2017 / Duration: 1 mins
Directed by: Stian Smestad

Hayley: 90 Seconds On Fear

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear.” That’s the mantra of Hayley Ashburn as she walks a 170-foot highline between outcroppings in the wintry Dolomites.

2018 / Duration: 12 mins
Directed by: Tyler Allyn

Frontier of Firsts

True wilderness is hard found in an era of social media and geotagging. These kayakers won’t settle for second descents, and with enough effort and determination, they’re able to find a Frontier of Firsts.

2018 / Duration: 32 mins
Directed by: Skye Fitzgerald

Lifeboat

“Another tragedy in the Mediterranean,” a newscaster reports after a flimsy boat carrying 600 migrants sinks in the dangerous central Mediterranean crossing between Libya and Italy. Masked men wearing gloves pull back huge white tarps covering some of the victims. Skye Fitzgerald’s Lifeboat, a 2017 Mountainfilm Commitment Grantee, goes on to chronicle a successful rescue by the German nonprofit Sea-Watch. “Libya is hell,” says a survivor. Conditions in Libya offered “two options: Life or death,” says Aisha. She beat the odds, many others did not.

2016 / Duration: 10 mins
Directed by: Paola Mendoza

Free Like The Birds

Precocious Sophie Cruz convinced her martial arts teacher to let her attend classes when she was just 3 years old. She is a luchadora, a fighter. So when her parents, who are undocumented immigrants, told her they don’t have papers and could be deported back to Mexico, Sophie vowed to keep her family together. On a trip to Washington, D.C., Sophie, then just 6, cleared a security barrier to deliver her message to Pope Francis. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court will consider Deferred Action for Parents of Americans, which would grant protected status to Sophie’s family and thousands of others and let them live free like the birds.

2018 / Duration: 4 mins
Directed by: Wylie Overstreet

A New View of the Moon

Wylie Overstreet was hanging out in his L.A. apartment one night and, out of boredom, decided to take his high-powered telescope out to the street to peer at the moon. Pretty soon people began wandering up and asking him what he was up to. When he showed them, they nearly fell over in awe. A New View of the Moon is just the reminder we need to keep looking up. Because as Galileo said, back in 1610, “it’s a beautiful and wondrous sight to behold the body of the moon.”

Saturday Family Matinee Films

2017 USA / Duration: 3 mins
Directed by: Todd Jones

10 Year Old Kai Jones’ Mind-Blowing Season Edit

Kai Jones is a 10-year-old who’s already making a name for himself as a big mountain skier. Kai takes on the legendary Corbet’s Couloir in Jackson Hole, dubbed “America’s scariest ski slope.”

2016 France / Duration: 3 mins
Directed by: Hugues Valin

The Day I Beat The Sky

Crashing thunder and lightning can be scary, but this animated film gives a young boy the motivation and rhythm to rock out until the clouds clear.

2016 UK / Duration: 6 mins
Directed by: Evgenia Golubeva

I Want to Live in the Zoo

Sasha decides that living in a zoo is much more exciting than living at home where she is responsible for chores, homework and eating vegetables. She’ll eventually need to determine whether or not giraffes and penguins make for better parents.

2017 USA / Duration: 3 mins
Directed by: Thomas Winston

Meet the Real Wolf

Throughout history, myths about the “big bad wolf” generated scary stereotypes of the animal that crept out of fairy tales and into human consciousness. By the 1950s, wolves were pushed to the brink of extinction in the lower 48. In this short film, predator becomes protagonist as we learn what happens when the wolf is no longer antagonized, but recognized as the missing link in a healthy ecosystem.

2017 / Duration: 4 mins
Directed by: Todd Jones, Steve Jones

Rogue Elements: Corbet’s Couloir Segment

A right of passage for any Jackson Hole skier, Corbet’s Couloir is conquered here not on two planks, but two wheels.

2016 / Duration: 10 mins
Directed by: Paola Mendoza

Free Like The Birds

Precocious Sophie Cruz convinced her martial arts teacher to let her attend classes when she was just 3 years old. She is a luchadora, a fighter. So when her parents, who are undocumented immigrants, told her they don’t have papers and could be deported back to Mexico, Sophie vowed to keep her family together. On a trip to Washington, D.C., Sophie, then just 6, cleared a security barrier to deliver her message to Pope Francis. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court will consider Deferred Action for Parents of Americans, which would grant protected status to Sophie’s family and thousands of others and let them live free like the birds.

2017 USA / Duration: 7 mins
Directed by: Dorothy Jean Ross

Up All Night

Five-year-old Dorothy Jean Ross invites us along on an all-night adventure dreamscape, where we all get to enjoy a child’s limitless imagination with her own narration and some animation help from her father.

2017 USA / Duration: 2 mins
Directed by: James Mabery, Mark Conlan

Unexpected Discoveries

What wonderful delights await when we put away our phones and observe the world around us. This animated short film shares and fosters creativity and imagination.

2017 Canada / Duration: 5 mins
Directed by: Lacy Kemp

Intersection: Micayla Gatto

Professional mountain biker and artist Micayla Gatto recreates in her paintings the sweeping vistas of ridgelines she rides on her bike. Both cornering berms and putting paintbrush to canvas allow Gatto to achieve that magical flow state where she exists completely and happily in the present moment. Intersection takes us inside the vibrant space where artist and athlete collide, as Gatto pedals through her artwork with a splash of color.

2017 Canada / Duration: 5 mins
Directed by: Dave Mossop

Imagination: Tom Wallisch

From the boredom of the backseat of his parents’ station wagon, a young skier imagines the passing front-yard snow piles and sloping roofs as suburban ski terrain. His daydream suddenly springs to life as freeskier Tom Wallisch flies over Airstreams and garbage cans, and down the steps and rails of Nelson, British Columbia, sparks flying when his skis meet pavement. Imagination is an homage to the late Canadian freeskier J.P. Auclair’s iconic street segment from the film All.I.Can. (Mountainfilm 2011), which proves with a little snow and creativity anything is possible.

Saturday Night Films

2017 Canada / Duration: 14 mins
Directed by: Eric Crosland

Loved by All: The Story of Apa Sherpa

“I wouldn’t wish this for anyone,” says Apa Sherpa, who summited Everest 21 times, having started as a porter at the age of 12 following the death of his father. Eric Crosland’s Loved By All leaves no doubt that for many Sherpa, the hard, dangerous work of hauling gear and guiding westerners on Everest is undertaken not for glory, but to provide for their families. Apa Sherpa is now devoted to providing educational opportunities to children of the Khumbu Valley, hoping to spare them his fate. “The true beauty of Nepal is not the mountains, but the people who live in their shadow,” he says, calling into question the Everest industry, fueled by Sherpa labor.

2018 USA / Duration: 5 mins
Directed by: Jordan Halland

Brighter Night

A dash of spelunking. A pinch of ice climbing. A sprinkle of semi-psychedelic light show. This brief recipe is just right for a short feast.

2017 Canada / Duration: 5 mins
Directed by: Dave Mossop

Imagination: Tom Wallisch

From the boredom of the backseat of his parents’ station wagon, a young skier imagines the passing front-yard snow piles and sloping roofs as suburban ski terrain. His daydream suddenly springs to life as freeskier Tom Wallisch flies over Airstreams and garbage cans, and down the steps and rails of Nelson, British Columbia, sparks flying when his skis meet pavement. Imagination is an homage to the late Canadian freeskier J.P. Auclair’s iconic street segment from the film All.I.Can. (Mountainfilm 2011), which proves with a little snow and creativity anything is possible.

2017 USA / Duration: 16 mins
Directed by: Renan Ozturk, Ben Ayers

Mothered by Mountains

“So this was supposed to be a film about, like, empowering women, about bringing two of my friends on this badass adventure. But it all kinda went horribly wrong.” That’s Ben Ayers of the dZi Foundation, who hatched a plan to match renowned Nepalese climber Pasang Llamu Sherpa Akita with Kathmandu punk rocker Sareena Rai for an ambitious objective: motorcycle from Kathmandu to mountains, then bag a first ascent. But the white-male-directed adventure falls flat, and the women end up doing it their own way, bonding as they go over issues like motherhood, family and the pressures of society on their gender.

2017 / Duration: 4 mins
Directed by: Todd Jones, Steve Jones

Rogue Elements: Corbet’s Couloir Segment

A right of passage for any Jackson Hole skier, Corbet’s Couloir is conquered here not on two planks, but two wheels.

2018 USA / Duration: 25 mins
Directed by: Cameron Maier

Craig’s Reaction

In 2002, Craig DeMartino was climbing with a friend in Rocky Mountain National Park when a terrible miscommunication occurred; DeMartino fell nearly 100 feet onto the rocks below. He survived, but his injuries were devastating — ruptured lung, fractured spine, pulverized feet, among others — and the accident forever altered his life. He could have retreated into his injuries and given up on climbing. Instead, DeMartino, who had one leg amputated under the knee, got back into his harness. Today, he has climbed grades as hard as 5.12, led an all-disabled ascent of El Capitan and introduced scores of fellow disabled athletes to the joy of climbing.

2017 USA / Duration: 6 mins
Directed by: Frank Pickell, Ben Sturgulewski

The Space Within

Picking through the tidepools of a deserted tropical beach, a young boy finds a mysterious treasure washed upon the rocks and is swiftly transported to a different world. This one is blanketed in snow, muffled by storms and home to skiers carving through shoulder-deep powder.

2018 Honduras / Duration: 26 mins
Directed by: Jon Klaczkiewicz

Beyond The Horizon

This is, above all, a film about transformation and redemption. And, at the same time, it is fundamentally a fly-fishing film. How those two disparate descriptions square is through the story the film tells of Rankin Jackson, a struggling Honduran islander who gets caught up in the dark and dangerous world of drug running. Well against the odds, Rankin’s experience in that netherworld leads him to a new life that is bright and promising and far beyond the horizon of his old dreams.

2017 USA / Duration: 4 mins
Directed by: Scott Gaffney

Drop Everything: Full Michelle Parker Segment

Fast, fearless, steep and deep. That about sums up Michelle Parker as she carves graceful lines into the spines of Alaska.