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Why Ski Movies Still Matter

Charlie Walker September 18, 2023

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Why Ski Movies Still Matter

It’s almost labor day. Halloween is just around the corner. And November is essentially ski season even though it will be garbage by all accounts til mid winter. Yes, fall is here whether you like it or not. And while the changing of leaves and seasons bums others out, it gets me stoked because that means its also ski movie season.

Though there sure aren’t as many as there once were. Level1 stopped making movies but is still making movies. Gaffney stepped away from behind the lens at MSP. And Warren Miller traded it’s soul in for reruns after 75 years. Not a great look for the genre to be honest.

And while some may argue that the best days of ski films are behind us, I am here to tell you ski movies still very much matter…maybe more than ever.

The Community

Ski movies still bring people together like few things in the outdoor community can. A common place, time and cause all dedicated to sharing a love of skiing. For the most part premieres are fresh clean fun for all ages and that’s reflected in the attendance demographics. Barely walking and talking kiddos all the way to the olds at the other end of the spectrum facing their own struggles with walking and talking. Men, women, children, lifties, corporate execs, heck even snowboarders are welcome.

It’s the event of the season in a ski town, seeing friends you may have not seen all summer. Outside the mountain, whether it’s small town or big city it’s even more important. Ski movies draw out those with similar passions giving them a ski community in places one doesn’t naturally occur.

Inside or out, ski movies have stoke levels rising all over town. 📸@TheSkiJournal

And while the local impact of ski movies is that of personal connection, ski movies have an even larger importance for the outdoor ski community as a whole. Attending and enjoying ski movies supports such a larger group of people. The athletes, the photographers, cinematographers, editors, writers, sponsors and more. Yes they do it for the fans, and cause it’s rad and they love it, but it’s also their job. Funding and fueling that is a reciprocal ecosystem that needs to be embraced and nourished so that it continues. Ski movies matter for the community more than ever.

The Art

The amount of content available to us these days is absurd. I’ve probably watched more videos on the toilet this week, than someone in the 1930’s probably saw in their entire life. And on some level I guess it’s cool that every skier with a phone, GoPro, or drone can express themselves. But a lot of it is garbage. Garbage full of turd burgers. Sometimes the pros are pros for a reason and just do it better. Painting every mountain with beautiful brushstrokes of crisp turns, and a splash of gnar.

Sometimes only the pros can get those shots 📸@maximemoulin

That’s why the art of making ski movies, real ski movies is so important. When given the proper funding, resources, and creative license to create the results are incomparable. Not only does the big screen bring out the best athletes but also the best artists to help paint their masterpieces over some of the most gorgeous and challenging terrain on the planet. Every little aspect is curated. The best lighting, cameras, locations, plots, storyline, and the music. Oh man how good is finding a new favorite jam in a ski movie?

Actual ski movies allow and showcase the best of the best in a way other outlets just don’t do it justice. Ski movies need to be seen on the big screen. Or at least on a large screen at home.  Don’t watch shitty ski content on your laptop or phone, go see a real ski movie. Yes you could listen to Taylor Swift in your car but wouldn’t you rather be with 70,000 other swifties seeing the real deal in person and feel it in every inch of your body? And a ski movie ticket is like $20 not $2000. So treat yourself. Ski movies matter because skiing is beautiful, and they’re the closest thing we have to experiencing that art in the manner it was intended and to its fullest extent.

The Vibe

Nothing beats the vibe of a ski movie. It may be fall but it signals the unofficial start of ski season. The stoke levels start to rise, only to be increased exponentially by the professionally produced stoke on screen. It is the homecoming dance for skiers of all generations as they start to partner up and make plans for the season ahead. And the clothes! Dirtbag skiers but make it fashion! You have never seen to many flannel shirts in your life pair with just the right flat brimmed hat. Or maybe people get flashy breaking out their thousand dollar Bogner clothes that make zero actual sense on a mountain. Why? Because they want to see and be seen! It’s like picking out your outfit for the first day of school.

Stoked on skiing and free schwag! 📸 @newschoolers

And let’s not forget the kids. Kids excitement is so contagious at a ski movie. That’s why grown men will fight them when terrible free hats or stickers no one needs are tossed in the crowd. Because everyone gets caught up in it. And how could you not? You get to see your larger than life ski heroes on a big screen doing what they do best. And in many cases what you could only dream of doing in far away places you may never get to go to. And in some cases you can meet some of these athletes at the movie and if lucky get an autograph or selfie. Ski movies are constantly inspiring the next generation of shredders. And that is a vibe that I think matters!

That’s Why Ski Movies Matter

Ski movies are artistic treasures that bring communities together with all the feels. At least that’s why they matter to me. But that’s the other thing ski movies matter to everyone for different reasons. Maybe you love seeing park rats get wild in the streets. Or you love seeing the Alaskan spines larger than life on the big screen. Perhaps its the free or cheap beer at the premiere or useless stickers you definitely don’t need but will take because they’re free. Ski movies matter because skiing is in our blood and our souls. And sometimes the best way to remind ourselves of that is to appreciate it on film.

RELATED: The 2023 OOC Ski Movie Trailer Park


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