Wow. The only accurate word to describe the films I viewed on the first night of Thrillseekers. The films shown are imaginative and do an amazing job of pulling you into a world you couldn’t imagine. I was in complete awe of the amazing stories and journeys of the people I saw in their extreme sports.
Nissan presents the Thrillseekers Adventure Film Festival, powered by Nismo, an event that visits over 30 cinemas across the UK each year and showcases the best in extreme sports and adventure films. Experience an evening of adrenaline-pumping action through a selection of films that celebrate pushing mind and body to the limits.
The films presented on day one were Way of Life, Cascada, Not Bad, and The Last Great Climb.
Produced by Teton Gravity Research, Way of Life shows the stories of people who don’t just ski; they embrace the mountains and how their bond with the community transcends continents and cultures. With the film all shot on GSS, Red Cinema and the Sony Action Cam, on location creates stunning imagery that you wont forget quickly. Exploring the origins of skiing in Austria, the search for original lines in Alaska and the U.S. Freeskiing Team’s quest for Olympic gold, the film takes you on a journey to the mountains and inside the minds of todays top athletes. This journey takes them across the globe as they form a brotherhood that needs no language. The search for snow shapes, how they approach these peaks and how they approach the world proves that their passion for this sport is really just their way of life.
Produced by Shannon Ethridge and directed by Anson Fogel and Skip Armstrong, Cascada follows a team of kayakers and filmmakers, including Erik Boomer, Tyler Bradt, Galen Volckhausen, Tim Kemple, Anson Fogel, Blake Hendrix and Skip Armstrong, as they start their journey by heading to Veracruz State in Mexico in search of the perfect waterfall and perfect shot. We watch as the team struggle against the harsh backdrop of Mexican jungle as they battle against mud, endless rain and incessant biting insects in pursuit of their dreams. Along the way they come across an unexpected world filled with the fascinating native people and in spite of the terrible conditions, they find perfection and it is a beautiful moment to watch. After all their struggles, pain, sweat and tears they achieve their goal and you feel like it’s a metaphor for life. Very uplifting.
My favourite film of the night, Not Bad was produced by Anthill Films and follows the talented and diverse C3 Project Team for thirty days as they push the limits of biking whilst having a great time. The tale of seven riders, Brandon Semenuk, Brook MacDonald, Brett Rheeder, Cam McCaul, Andrew Shandro, René Wildhaber and Ryan Howard, was filmed by Anthill Films to capture them pushing the limits of biking as well as watching their daily lives using five cameras rolling at all times, the crew catch both the adventures outside and the ‘extra-curricular’ activities that the team indulge in during the time spent under one roof. Based in Queenstown, the riders and crew were able to have access to a diversity of locations such as the famous Frew Farm and the alpine single track. With animation and impressive camera, and cinematography, works the film looks as fun filled and impressive as an early Jackass. But with much more stunts.
Lastly, was The Last Great Climb, directed by Alistair Lee and produced by Posing Productions. Here we follow the journey of Leo Houlding, Jason Pickles and Sean Leary as they attempt to make the first ascent of the North East ridge of the majestic Ulvetanna Peak, which is one of the most demanding climbs in the worlds harshest environments. As we watch the team with their e[pic struggle we are also welcomed with interviews from Sir Chris Bonington, Doug Scott, Conrad Anker, Ivar Tolleffsen and Robert Caspersen, who share their personal experiences of Queen Maud Land, having first explored the area in 1994. The impressive landscape only stands out ever so much more when you see the men climb it and they appear like ants on a very dangerous landscape. A one to watch.
I would personally recommend anyone to go and watch any of these films because they have such an uplifting story, if not making the audience feel inferior, contrasted with such harsh and dangerous sports.