The Banff Mountain Film Festival Tour returns once more to the Arden Theatre, opening our eyes to the inspirational stories of extreme sports enthusiasts who defy their physical and mental limits.
It launched in 1976, documenting mountain culture, sports and recreation, as well as highlighting stunning photography and filmmaking. To this day, it never fails to spur the imagination towards fresh challenges.
This year’s program is titled Aspen. It will feature eight short documentaries, which include a few hand-clenching moments such as watching Rafael Bridi in Walking on Clouds. The Brazilian aerialist walks a long slackline tied between two-hot air balloons almost 2,000 metres above ground. By the way, the hot air balloons are floating parallel to clouds. Fearless, or a death wish? You pick.
In Colors of Mexico, daredevil mountain biker Kilian Bron and his team roar through the colourful streets of historic villages to the tops of active volcanoes. Across the Pacific Ocean in Fabric: A Documentary Series, Ep. 4 Heritage, Hawaiian surfer Mainei Kinimaka connects with her ancestral language and traditions through the sea.
Directors and freeskiers Max Kroneck and Joachen Mesle of Ice and Palms, create a self-powered ski and cycling tour that reunites the duo for a 1,800 kilometre odyssey. During this six-week trip from their home in southern Germany to the Mediterranean Sea, the duo ski down mountains and carry a bicycle on their backs while doing so.
Clean Mountains, instead, looks at carting away tons of junk from Mount Everest. Through the past decades, big spenders climbing Mount Everest littered it with garbage and broken equipment. During the pandemic, no foreign climbers scaled the towering rock. A Sherpa family decided to climb it and pick up the garbage as a show of respect for the mountain.
Aspen’s two-hour screening also includes Eco-Hack, a biologist studying desert tortoises in the Mojave Desert; Sheri, a 19-minute documentary on Sheri Tingey, a woman who started a boating company at 50, and The Process, a film about a super extreme athlete who charts a course to run 142 km in 24 hours. (That’s nearly the same distance as Edmonton to Red Deer).
Aspen screens Wednesday, Oct. 4 at 7:30 p.m. at the Arden Theatre, 5 St. Anne Place. Tickets are $24.50 to $30. Online at tickets.stalbert.ca or by calling 780-459-1542.