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Banff Mountain Film Festival 2020 Films

The Banff Mountain Film Festival is a staple in every adventurers year. Whether you sit down for a night, or 2 or 3, every year for the festival, or peruse all the films as they come online, some of the best adventure filmmaking finds it’s way through the Banff festival.

This year, due to the COVID-19 issues around the world, it seems they’ve had to cancel the tour. Because of this many films are now online.

The list was put together by Lianne Caron in PDF form here. I’ve updated the formatting and included links below. Thanks to Kraig at the Adventure Blog for finding it.

RJ Ripper (2018, 20 min)

Kids and bikes; wherever you are in the world, they go together. The chaotic streets ofKathmandu may not seem like a typical breeding ground for world-class mountain bikers, but then again nothing is typical about Rajesh (RJ) Magar. Since learning to ride on a beat-up clunker, to becoming the four-time National Champion at age 21, RJ’s story is one of boundless childhood dreaming and unstoppable determination, forged from junkyard scraps and tested on the rugged trails of the mighty Himalaya.

BAWLI BOOCH – Downhill Biking India (2017, 5 min)

4Play is India’s first adventure film company. A fun short film with a catchy song that will make you smile. Downhill Mountain Biking in Manali (India), Himalayan cultural nuances and a catchy Bollywood song that will make your foot tap and keep your eyes glued to the screen.

Speak To Me Softly (2019, 6 min)

Experience fear and emotion alongside climber Jenny Abegg as she ascends Moonlight Buttress while fighting the self-criticism and doubt from that little voice we all have in the back of our heads.

Life of Pie | Pizza and Bikes Can Fix Anything (2019, 11 min)

In 2002, mountain bikers and entrepreneurs Jen Zeuner and Anne Keller moved to Fruita, Colorado, in search of cheap rent, world-class single track, and free time to ride. Over 15 years later, the two unconventional women have helped reshape one of the state’s most conservative towns, uniting the community through advocacy, inclusivity, and damn good pizza.

Loved By All: The Story of Apa Sherpa(2018, 14 min)

Every spring the summit of Mount Everest drews people from around the world. But in its shadow live the Sherpa, a resilient, religious people, who, despite the riches surrounding the highest peak on earth, are still quite poor and uneducated. A child of the Khumbu, Apa Sherpa climbed Everest 21 times. Pulled away at the age of 12 to work as a high altitude porter, like so many others, he would leave his family for months, risking his life on the mountain. Through his work at the Apa Sherpa Foundation, he aims to create a different future for his people.

Artifishal | The Fight to Save Wild Salmon (2019, 80 min)

Artifishal is a film about people, rivers, and the fight for the future of wild fish and the environment that supports them. It explores wild salmon’s slide toward extinction, threats posed by fish hatcheries and fish farms, and our continued loss of faith in nature.

The Last Honey Hunter (2017, 36 min)

In the steep mountain jungles of Nepal’s Hongu river valley, members of the isolated Kulung culture have risked their lives for generations scaling dangerous cliffs to collect wild and toxic honey. Deep and dark, the film glides through a misty world of forest spirits, dreams, and woodsmoke to share the story of the leader of the harvest and his final journey.

The Frozen Road (2018, 25 min)

Self-shot and edited whilst cycling around the world, this short film charts my winter journey into the Canadian Arctic as I completed my bike ride up the American continent. Compelled byJack London’s assertion, that ‘any man who is a man can travel alone’, I sought an adventure of perfect solitude. Yet, as I came to realise, the harsh truths of travelling in such a formidable environment were a long way from the romantic images I’d held of this land. The Frozen Road is an honest reflection on my solo trip; of the wonder, terror and frustration I experienced when riding through the unforgiving emptiness of one of the world’s ‘last great wildernesses’.

Blood Road (2017, 92 min)

Rebecca Rusch’s search for connection. In this award-winning film, Rebecca Rusche cycles 1,930km along the Ho Chi Minh Trail through the jungles of Vietnam. The goal is to reach the site where her father, a US Air Force pilot, was shot down in Laos more than 40 years ago.

Billder (2018, 6 min)

Bill McLane is a trail builder. What started as a hobby between forest firefighting seasons became a career which has helped shape the mountain bike scene on Vancouver Island. Billder takes a closer look at the craft and dedication behind the trails we sometimes take for granted.It shows that when people pursue their passion, we’re all better for it

Up To Speed (2018, 20 min)

Some climbers perceive speed climbing as a fringe activity, but its inclusion in the 2020 Olympics means it’s now being taken seriously. Film-maker Zachary Barr takes an in-depth look into the sport.

Okpilik – Inuit Nunangat Taimaannganit (2019, 4 min)

Mary Kudlak talks about fishing in Okpilik lake near Ulukhaktok as part of the Inuit Nunangat Taimannganit video project.

Dark Peak Fell Runners (2019, 17 min)

The Dark Peak Fell Runners base themselves in Sheffield, but their playground is the PeakDistrict National Park where they weave tracks through the fields, peat bogs and rocky outcrops to create a tapestry of eccentricity, endeavour and endurance.

Chasing a Trace (2019, 21 min)

This is a love story between a badass woman scientist and one of the most elusive wild animals on earth set in the snowy high mountains of Western Canada.

Climb Your Dreams (2019, 2 min)

The rush of life in the city inspires a dream for an escape. The nature of reality is questioned by the contrast of what we do for a living.

Full Moon (2019, 6 min)

Closing lifts and the setting sun mark the end of the action for most skiers. But not for Max Kronech and Jochen Mesle. While ski towns fall asleep they head into the mountains to see them in a new light.

Good Morning (2018, 4 min)

Every day, skier Richard Permin falls into his mundane morning routine. Right after getting out of bed, he clicks on his skis and rides down the snow covered rooftops of Avoriaz.

The Imaginary Line (2019, 10 min)

In an act of political solidarity, a team from Mexico and the U.S.A assemble with the sole purpose of establishing a slackline that crosses the border between them. In a world that is constantly tearing us apart, they come together to cross an imaginary line and tell a different story.

Age of Ondra (2018, 47 min)

On the heels of a historic 5.15d ascent, we follow climber Adam Ondra from his home in theCzech Republic, across Europe to North America, as he innovates new training methods, establishes upper echelon first ascents, and attempts to be the first person to send 5.15 on the first try.

Part one

Part two

Part three

Thabang (2019, 13 min)

Thabang Madiba somehow found his way into the world of trail running and in the last fewyears has become everyone’s favourite in the South African trail scene.

The Redstone Pack (2018, 5 min)

What began as an impromptu leap into the world of dog sledding, Aaron Natoniewski’s methodical approach to the sport and understanding of his dogs has inspired a team ofsled hounds unlike any other.

We Are Abel (2018, 8 min)

We Are Abel features the story of a Gwich’in father who is standing against reckless plans to industrialize the Arctic Refuge and not only fight for his culture’s existence, but also for his son’s ability to know that culture fully.

The River’s Call (2019, 8 min)

The River’s Call follows seven kayakers through the deep canyons and challenging whitewater of the Rio Apurimac the farthest source of the Amazon in the heart of the Andes.

The Ladakh Project (2019, 13 min)

Seven days, three rivers, one woman. This is the story of Nouria Newman’s solo kayak adventure in the Indian Himalaya.

The Flip (2019, 3 min)

French skydiver Remi Angeli must face his fears in order to explore new expressions of movement while BASE jumping in Mexico. On the other side of his fear he discovers life inits purest form.

Kai Jones – Far Out (2018, 6 min)

Eleven-year-old Kai Jones isn’t old enough to go to the movies alone or order a sandwich at the pub, but in the mountains age doesn’t matter. He is following in his family’s ski tracks…right into backflips and tricks off of cliffs.

Every Mystery I’ve Lived (2019, 24 min)

At the end of 2017, rookie slopestyle MTB rider Emil Johansson was on top of the world. In his first full season, he was crowned FMB World Tour champion as a teenager only for his world to crumble around him with a mystery illness.

Eclipse (2015, 32 min)

Photographer Reuben Krabbe is someone captivated by the solar eclipse, and so in March 2015 he set out to take a photo of a skier during this infrequent occurrence in the northern archipelago of Svalbard, Norway. The story of this demanding expedition was documented by Salomon in partnership with Switchback Entertainment and won Best Film: Snow Sports at the Banff Mountain Film Festival.

Charge (2019, 5 min)

Four top freeskiers and a world champion drone pilot are dropped at Chatter Creek, BC for one week. Their instructions: charge as hard as you can every day.

Liv Along the Way (2018, 23 min)

Since she first summited Mont Blanc as a teen, Liv Sansoz knew she would make her life in the mountains. She was twice crowned World Champion in sport climbing, and eventually expanded her professional horizons to mixed climbing, ski mountaineering, and base jumping. In 2017, at 40 years old, Liv set out from her base in Chamonix, France to attempt to climb all 82 4000m peaks in the European Alps in a single year. As she’s learned several times throughout her life, things don’t always go as planned.

Frozen Mind (2018, 33 min)

Together with his old friend Pierre Hourticq, snowboarder Victor de le Rue tries to write a new story in the iconic mountains near Chamonix. Frozen Mind is not just a freeride film, it is a story of friendship and a journey of discovery as the two men take unique paths in order to conquer the same objectives.

The 7 Stages of Blank (2019, 42 min)

Blank Collective films takes you on a journey through The 7 Stages of Blank, a lighthearted look into the bond that develops around the sport of skiing.

Circle of the Sun (2019, 5 min)

Steep mountains, the ocean, the sun, and the aurora borealis. One rotation of the sun high in the Arctic on skis equals one day of magic.

Safe Haven (2018, 8 min)

Founded on the belief that everyone is welcome, Memphis Rox opened a climbing gym to beat the center of the city’s revitalization. Watch and if you are interested to learn more about Memphis Rox.

Camel Finds Water (2019, 8 min)

Trevor found the hull of an abandoned fishing boat in a field. He brought it home and built it back to a sea-worthy state over the course of a summer. Then, he took it on its maiden voyage to British Columbia in search of waves.

This Land (2019, 10 min)

Runner and advocate Faith E. Briggs used to run through the streets of Brooklyn every morning. Now, she’s running 150 miles through three U.S. National Monuments that lay in the thick of the controversy around public lands.

Beneath the Ice (2019, 16 min)

Canadian Will Gadd uses his unparalleled ice climbing skills and knowledge to lead a scientific exploration into uncharted territory inside of the Greenland ice sheet.

Aziza (2018, 6 min)

Set in the streets of Bou Tharar and the wide, craggy valleys of the lower Atlas mountains, Aziza is the story of a young woman who has thrived in the world of ultra-running and how she has become a role model for other up-and-coming athletes in Morocco.

Standing Man (2019, 13 min)

Cyclist Payson McElveen attempts to break the current fastest known time on the grueling 160 km White Rim Road in Canyonlands National Park.

Eli (2019, 5 min)

As a rancher growing up in the rugged northeast corner of the Navajo Nation with no electricity or running water, Eli Neztsosie learned through years of work what it meant to rely on discipline and endurance. Now he relies on these same skills, running long distances— striving every day, in his words, to be better than he was the day before.

Nordic Skater(2018, 5 min)

A Nordic Skater is the very first film about this little known sport. It features Per Sollerman, a photographer who has been skating on frozen lakes and fjords for the past 10 years. During 6 captivating minutes, the viewer is transported to the region of Oslo to have a peek at a story of a man who uses every sense he has to travel on thin ice.

Out on a Limb (2019, 21 min)

Engineer Kai Lin teams up with climber Craig DeMartino to design a badass prosthetic foot, which if they succeed won’t just level the playing field, but will dish up, if not superpowers, then a real sense of empowerment, which is almost the same thing.

Spirit (2019, 20 min)

An intimate story of longing and belonging in India’s sacred mountains. Spirit explores what it takes to make a home in a remote community in the thralls of change.

Solstice (2019, 4 min)

A skier’s tribute to the shortest day of the year when the sun arcs low over the horizon and the ice crystals linger in the air.

Narics (2019, 19 min)

In the midst of Kosovo, an area that’s been haunted by war and ethical conflicts, Elias Elhardt discovers the small ski resort Brezovica. Snowboard enthusiast Hamdi is one of the locals that now wants to breathe new life into this special place. He guides Elias through this forgotten world and reflects on the question, how a future can be built if the past still weighs so heavily.

Valley of the Moon (2018, 21 min)

Valley of the Moon explores the importance of climbing as a way to cross cultural barriers, build friendship and chase adventure in one of the most breathtaking regions of the earth.

The Legend of Rafael (2019, 7 min)

A beautiful story about the power of two wheels and a community built through bicycling. After a devastating breakup, Rafael finds solitude and restoration on the open road, pedaling his way to emotional health from Mexico City to northern Colorado. With just $500 to his name, he spearheads a revolution to help the underprivileged members of his new neighborhood the bestway he knows how—repairing their bicycles.

Over Time – Sammy C (2019, 7 min)

Filmed purley in the heart of the BC backcountry, Over Time – Sammy C features the bestshots from a full winter with pro skier Sammy Carlson.

Wallmapu (2018, 6 min)

The Pehuenche people of present-day Chile speak Mapudungun: ‘the language of the land.’This land, their universe, is known as Wallmapu. Two skiers enter, into a breathtaking creation of ancient Araucaria trees, looming volcanoes, and windblown snow.

Chasing the Sublime (2018, 6 min)

Why do we put ourselves into the path of discomfort and risk? What drives us to get too cold and too tired, to battle with fear, in the name of adventure? Follow the originators of TheOutdoor Swimming Society, ‘swim twins’ Kate Rew and Kari Furre, in this hauntingly beautiful glimpse at the physicality of UK cold water swimming, as two friends set out to chase the sublime.

The Running Pastor(2019, 8 min)

Sverri is a local Pastor and avid runner who uses his time on the trails to work through not only his own personal conflicts, but the conflicts of others he often is burdened with.

BMX Nigeria(2019, 13 min)

BMX street is one of the most frequently evolving sports in the world and, in Nigeria, a group of local riders are reinventing riding at a grassroots level.

The Shepherdess (2018, 6 min)

A brutal drought is gripping the Southwest and the Navajo reservation especially hard, threatening traditional shepherds and a way of life going back generations.

Silence (2018, 18 min)

What does it take to climb the world’s first 9c? Let’s find out in Silence, a movie by Bernardo Giménez. It shows what preceded the afternoon of September 3, 2017 when Adam Ondra, a professional rock climber and currently one of the best climbers in the world, made a little piece of climbing history when he climbed his project in the spectacular Hanshelleren Cave in Norway. The route, later named Silence, received a new grade of 9c and became the hardest route in the world.

Ice & Palms (2018, 32 min)

The documentary follows skiers Jochen Mesle and Max Kroneck on their most ambitious ski tour yet. A 100% self powered adventure from southern Germany all the way to the mediterranean sea.

Sacred Strides (2018, 12 min)

Bears Ears National Monument is a public land under threat. In 2018, a group of NativeAmerican tribes put their differences aside and ran 1280 km to Bears Ears to send a message of unity.

Hourya (2018, 10 min)

Fly Above the ancient sands of the Moroccan coastline. Let your spirit soar with lightness and the feeling of Hourya.

FAST HORSE (2018, 14 min)

FAST HORSE follows the return of the Blackfoot bareback horse racing tradition in a new form: the Indian Relay. Siksika horseman Allison Red Crow struggles to build a team with second-hand horses and a new jockey, Cody Big Tobacco, to take on the best riders in the Blackfoot Confederacy at the Calgary Stampede.

The Moment (2017, 74 min)

In the backwoods of British Columbia, three small but dedicated crews of adventure seekers were quietly changing the course of a sport and carving their paths in history. TheMoment captures the birth and success of the original freeride mountain bike movement.

For the Love of Mary (2018, 6 min)

When 97-year-old runner George Etzweiler dons his lucky ancient green running shorts, he’s not just running to the summit of Mt Washington, he carries something special with him: the memory of his late wife of 68 years.

Break on Through (2017, 26 min)

Margo Hayes, a little-known 19 year old from Boulder Colorado, has moved to Europe to train and climb with the goal of succeeding on two of the most iconic 5.15s in France and Spain. Butby pushing her body and mind to the absolute limit, she risks injury and failure in her quest to be the first.

Life of Glide (2017, 16 min)

Big Mountain rider Jeremy Jones dissects his lifelong passion for the simple sacred feeling he calls “The Glide.”

Brothers of Climbing (2017, 7 min)

How can you be what you can’t see? Mikhail Martin, co-founder of Brothers of Climbing said, “Iliterally typed, ‘Are there black climbers?’ in Google … someone said, ‘black people don’t climb.’”

Ride of the Dead (2017, 12 min)

Enter into the world of Oaxacan mountain bike culture during Mexico’s famous annual celebration known as Dia De Los Muertos.

Holocene (2018, 12 min)

Join two riders from Japan as they dive into the cultural history of the dolomites clattering up Via Ferratas and shredding down couloirs along the way.

Beautiful Idiot (2018, 15 min)

Beautiful Idiot takes you on a ride through the mindset and motivations of those who feel driven to pursue greatness, how it can feel to fall short, and the consequences of reaching a lofty goal when the struggle to get there has defined you for so long. Featuring professional freeride mountain bike rider Brett Rheeder.

Perspectives | India(2018, 5 min)

Professional mountain bike athlete and artist Micayla Gatto adventures to the Indian Himalayas to experience the culture with her unique artistic perception.

Inside the Indus – A Pakistani Odyssey (2017, 27 min)

An international team of kayakers heads to Pakistan to attempt a descent of the fabled RonduGorge, on the Indus river. Hidden behind a wall of political and security factors meant it had been eight years since the last expedition had ventured into the gorge.

Skier Vs Drone (2018, 4 min)

2018 Olympic Bronze Medalist skier racer, Victor Muffat-Jeandet, faces off against 2x WorldDrone Racing Champion, Jordan Temkin, in a dual GS race to see who is the fastest down the mountain.

The Faction Collective Presents: La Grave (2018, 17 min)

Sam Anthamatten and Johnny Collinson travel to La Grave to push the limits of steep skiing and discover what makes La Grave so unique – a mythic freeride location where time stops.

Children of the Columbia: A Skier’s Odyssey (2018, 20 min)

A cultural ski journey up the historically-charged waters of the Columbia River in interior British Columbia.

The Sky Piercer (2018, 44 min)

Snow athletes Sam Smoothy, Xavier De Le Rue, Nadine Wallner and Fraser McDougall take on the challenge of skiing down New Zealand’s highest mountain, the notorious Mount Cook(Aoraki). Will extreme weather and icy conditions defeat them?

The Lorax Project (2018, 35 min)

Six friends embark on a determined quest to climb and then BASE jump ‘The Lorax’, a formidable climb in remote western Tasmania. Surrounded by some of the most pristine wilderness in all of Australia, they contend with extreme weather and rugged terrain, relying on each other’s skills and a bit of humour to reach their goal.

Escape (2018, 8 min)

JaBig, a Montreal-based DJ, buys a bike on a whim and decides to attempt to beat the record for the longest continuous bike ride in a single country. What’s more, he’ll ride a single-speed, fixed-gear bicycle and finish in the winter, approaching the Arctic Ocean by way of Canada’s northernmost continental hamlet, Tuktoyaktuk in the Northwest Territories.

Facing Sunrise (2017, 8 min)

While dealing with one of the darkest times of her life, processing family trauma and recovering from injury, Azzah overhears a conversation around the question, “what do you want to do before you die?” Inspired and energized, she rushes home and begins her bucket list. Although she has never seen herself as much of an adventurer, she realizes she’s capable of more than she ever imagined.

Ascending Afghanistan *warning graphic content (2016, 44 min)

Follow the first female Afghan mountaineering team as they navigate their first expedition and fight for recognition as athletes amongst their country, culture, and families.

Brotherhood of Skiing (2018, 10 min)

Since 1973, the National Brotherhood of Skiers has overcome barriers by bringing soul, smiles and a party to the mountain.

How to Run 100 Miles (2018, 28 min)

The odds were stacked against Jayson Sime early in life: poverty, homelessness, dyslexia, bullying. But he learned to fight. In 2017, he entered his first 100-mile mountain ultramarathon, betting on his lifelong resilience to carry him to the finish line.

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