ADRENALINE junkies who are also scaredy-cats can get their kicks in celluloid as the Banff Mountain Film Festival Tour returns to theatres around our region with short films that will literally take your breath away (and leave you feeling glad you are tucked up in a comfortable seat)!
This year’s crop of short films, from under five minutes to 40 minutes, range from a delightful short of dogs chasing their mountain-biking owners to terrifying shots of a rider hurtling down a massive vertical slab of rock.
The festival, which has two series of films (blue and red), features quite extraordinary characters, extreme expeditions and stunning cinematography.
“Banff events are a celebration of the great outdoors with a vibrant atmosphere – and we guarantee audiences will leave inspired to have an adventure of their own too,” says tour director Nell Teasdale.
Banff tour films are chosen from hundreds of entries into the Banff Mountain Film Festival, which is held every November in the Canadian Rocky Mountains.
The 2022 film highlights include:
Exit the North Pole: In 24-hour darkness and with temperatures down to minus 40 degrees, polar explorers Børge Ousland and Mike Horn attempt the unimaginable – a 1,500km ski expedition across the frozen Arctic Ocean, via the North Pole, with drifting ice and the threat of polar bears.
Dream Mountain: Defying societal norms, elite climber Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita has had a trailblazing career, reaching the summits of K2, Everest and other peaks. Life changed with the birth of her son, but Pasang decides that to be the best mother she can, she needs to follow her dreams again. The film follows her as she attempts a spectacular Nepalese peak called Cholatse.
West Highland Way: The 95- mile West Highland Way is a challenging long-distance path loved by walkers. It’s also the subject of fierce competition between elite mountain bikers, all vying to set a fastest known time record. The film records former pro rider Rab Wardell using all his bike handling skills and endurance to make history in his beloved homeland.
The Slabs: Lockdown saw the famous Scottish trials rider Danny MacAskill return to his homeland of the isle of Skye to tackle the Dubh Slabs – a 500m drop down an exposed rock face usually reserved for climbers and mountaineers. A nail-biting watch, this film shows rider and bike at their absolute limits.
A Dog’s Tale: A celebration of the joy of mountain biking, as seen through the eyes of our four-legged friends. Watch dogs of all sizes as they take on gnarly jumps, sweeping corners and berms – and often outclass their pro-rider owners.
Follow The Light: A mountain biking and hot air ballooning spectacular, this short was shot in the unique landscape of Cappodocia, Turkey, with its narrow canyons, extraordinary landforms and dramatic sunsets.
The 2022 Banff Mountain Film Festival continues its tour at the Victoria Rooms in Bristol, Victoria on 8th and 9th April, Poole Lighthouse on 6th May, and Christchurch Regent Centre, on 12th May.
For more information on the films in the blue and red series visit www.banff-uk.com
Pictured: Stills from The Slabs, A Dog’s Tale, Dream Mountain and Follow The Light.