2018 Showcase Series

Summer Showcase Series

As a way of bringing you the best of Flagstaff Mountain Film Festival submissions throughout its history and present day, we have teamed up with the Orpheum Theater to bring you an exciting Summer and Fall Showcase Series. These Series will feature the best of our cultural, environmental and adventure-related films and have special guests to share their stories.

SEPTEMBER | Mountain Bike Extravaganza

September 27 | Doors at 6:00pm, Show at 6:30pm

Join us for a series of short films followed by the feature presentation, “North of Nightfall.” The September Showcase will benefit Arizona Trail Association’s Gear Girls youth outdoor club.


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RJ Ripper – 19:25mins
Kids and bikes; wherever you are in the world, they go together. The chaotic streets of Kathmandu 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.

Dream Ride 2.0 – 5:20mins
Step into a dream world where the trails never end. DreamRide II is the sequel to last years’ award-winning short film, DreamRide. Combining a Dr. Seuss-inspired narrative, mind-blowing natural landscapes and one dreamer on a mountain bike, this film will take you on an adventure like no other.

Flow – 11mins
It’s not racing downhill on his mountain bike that makes Harald Philipp smile. Nor does he care whether he adds the most dangerous jumps and turns to his trails. When he’s on his bike on a ?via ferratáin the Dolomites, he is hunting something else: flow. That special state of being where everything’s just right, when confidence overrides fear and the bike and rider are one. What exactly is this perfect moment? How do we reach it? And can you only find it on a mountain bike? Harald has found his answer – and we are invited to join the ride.

Fall Impressions – 4mins
Sarah, a freelance fine art and commercial artist, her work—and her play—all stems from flow. It’s why her mountain biking and her painting go hand in hand. Her goal is to share with other people whatever magic she sees in the world around her.

A Mountain Bikers Paradise – 3mins
For mountain bikers Scott Countryman and Alex Pavon, the incredible network of mountain bike trails and broad community of fellow riders are the reasons they’re proud to call Flagstaff home.

The Frenchy – 16mins
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.

North of Nightfall – 65mins
Hidden among the glaciers on Axel Heiberg Island, high in the Arctic Circle, are mountain bike lines too incredible to ignore. Harsh temperatures, volatile weather and nine-month winters mean the area is normally devoid of human life. But each summer, this frozen landscape flourishes under endless daylight revealing a spectacular ecosystem. Join Darren Berrecloth, Carson Storch, Cam Zink and Tom van Steenbergen in North of Nightfall as they embark on an expedition to the top of the world to explore this relatively unknown land. Here they discover a rapidly changing environment steeped in history along with descents unlike anything anyone’s ridden to date.

AUGUST | Colorado River Days Film Celebration

August 30 | Doors at 6pm, Show at 7pm

We are kicking of Colorado River Days with our annual tribute “The River”. This year along with our partner Mountain Sports, we will feature Patagonia Inc’s new film Blue Heart, which tells the tale of the Balkan people’s fight against the gravest impending environmental disaster in Europe. Join us for Blue Heart and other films that pay tribute to the spirit of Big Red!

A Dream at Risk – 4:31mins 
As pressures mount for increased uranium mining in the Grand Canyon region, hunters, anglers and sportsmen are coming together to add their voices to the chorus of advocates fighting to protect this fragile ecosystem. *Filmmaker Justin Clifton will be present*

Walt – 6:04mins   
At 85 years old, organic raisin farmer and lifelong river advocate Walt Shubin is not slowing down. He has dedicated the last 65 years of his life to restoring California’s once-mighty San Joaquin River to the wild glory he remembers as a young boy. Driven by his passion for the river, and despite worn out knees and joints, he takes us on a journey to help us understand why this river is so important to all of us as well. *Filmmaker Justin Clifton will be present*

The Boatmaker – 3:43mins 
Brad Dimock has been building wooden dories and guiding in the Grand Canyon since the 1970s. These days, he’s a self-proclaimed “Grand Canyon obsessive” who devotes his life to sharing the place he loves most. Watch to meet this craftsman and experience the beauty of the Colorado River.

Kayaking Blind Trailer – 10mins
Watch the trailer to the feature film, Kayaking Blind, which chronicles Erik Weihenmayer’s journey kayaking through the Grand Canyon blind. Harlan Taney is the owner of 4 Corner Logistics and was Erik’s guide through the Canyon and will be present for a Q&A after the film.

Mexican Flying Bats – 5:56mins 
In the Sea of Cortez, researchers delve into the mystery of a bat that makes its living at sea. When the sun sets over the Sea of Cortez, a tiny bat weighing about as much as five nickels emerges from the boulder-covered hillsides on Isla Partida and heads out to sea. To Edward Hurme, a PhD candidate at the University of Maryland who is working in partnership with Tel-Aviv University, the Mexican fishing bat is as much a marine mammal as any whale or sea lion that makes its home in Baja California. And night, according to Hurme, “is when the magic happens.” All night, the bats swoop across the sea surface, snagging fish that still elude capture by the researchers despite their boats, nets, and high-tech gear. This video follows Hurme and his team in action, as they untangle the mystery of how these endangered bats find their prey.

Big World – 13mins 
As parents, how do we teach our kids that there is a world beyond social media, standardized tests and soccer practice? In April 2018, Eddie Bauer athlete David Morton and his seven-year-old son Thorne embarked on a week-long stand-up-paddleboard journey down the Karnali and Bheri Rivers in Western Nepal. David makes his living guiding some of the world’s most incredible peaks and Nepal is like a second home. He wanted to deepen Thorne’s understanding of the world beyond their Seattle neighborhood. Engaging with this world helps us grow. “There’s a basic paradox to parenting,” says David. “You have to keep your kids safe, but you have to teach them to take risks and follow curiosity. Life is undeniably richer with a little bit of daring.”

5000 Miles of Wild – 7:42mins 
Explore the spectacular canyons of the Wild and Scenic Rio Grande River in Big Bend National Park in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. Combining stunning scenery with insightful commentary on the state of river conservation from Senator Tom Udall, Ted Roosevelt IV, American Rivers staff and others, this film is a powerful call to action for protecting our country’s remaining wild rivers for future generations.

Blue Heart – 42mins 
The Balkan Peninsula is home to the last wild rivers in Europe. However, a deluge of hydropower development threatens to destroy the culture and ecology of this forgotten region. If fierce local opposition fails, the last undammed watersheds on the continent will be corralled by more than 3,000 proposed hydropower dams and diversions—at a time when dams are being decommissioned throughout much of the developed world.

Activists, who span the shores of these rivers, and European NGOs such as RiverWatch (run by German activist Ulrich Eichelmann), are fighting against local government corruption and foreign investment. Blue Heart documents the battle for the largest undammed river in Europe, Albania’s Vjosa, the effort to save the endangered Balkan lynx in Macedonia, and the women of Kruš?ica, Bosnia and Herzegovina, who are spearheading a months-long, 24/7 protest to protect their community’s only source of drinking water. These and other stories expose for the first time the gravest impending environmental disaster in Europe.

Watch the trailer here!

JULY | Indigenous Voices

July 19 | Doors at 6pm, Show at 6:30pm

A selection of films from our 2018 festival that highlights indigenous voices and cultures.

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Lakota in America – 15mins
For nearly a hundred years, it was illegal to practice Lakota customs. Now, the Cheyenne River Youth Project is working with young people like Genevieve to create a stronger economic and cultural future—and they’re using their Lakota heritage to get there.

Water Warriors – 21mins
Water Warriors is the story of a community’s successful resistance against the oil and gas industry. When an energy company begins searching for natural gas in New Brunswick, Canada, indigenous and white families unite to drive out the company in a campaign to protect their water and way of life.

Then Now and Forever: Zuni in the Grand Canyon – 27mins
Throughout their history, the A:shiwi people have made a pilgrimage through the Grand Canyon to leave offerings at traditional sites, gather materials for their cultural practices, and visit the place where their ancestors first emerged from the four Underworlds and into the light of day.

A Glimpse of the Dine – 10mins
This film documents a little glimpse of the Dinè People (AKA Navajo) and their culture at the Western Navajo Fair in Tuba City, Arizona.

Too Precious to Mine – 10mins
The Grand Canyon is an irreplaceable natural treasure. Its stunning vistas, ancient geology, and winding Colorado River are world-renowned — drawing over 5.5 million visitors to the park each year. Yet, irresponsibly operated uranium mines located on federal public land just miles from the North and South Rims threaten to permanently pollute the Grand Canyon landscape and the greater Colorado River.

JUNE | Go Big, Get Outside

June 27 | Doors at 6pm, Show at 6:30pm

Join us for a celebration of the outdoors, and those individuals around the world that are constantly pushing their limits and inspiring us everyday.