Posted on 19 Oct 2023

Grab the Popcorn! The Best Ski Films

Temperatures are dropping in the Colorado Rockies, the first snow of the season has fallen on the slopes and the race is on for the ski resorts to open. Breckenridge and Vail are expecting to welcome the first skiers and riders of the 2023/24 season on November 10. Beaver Creek and Steamboat’s lifts will fire up November 22.

It’s time to book your ski vacation, tune up the skis, and grab some popcorn...what? To get you stoked about those blue-bird sky days schussing through champagne powder, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite ski films. From short films by small adventure sports production companies to full length movies by Hollywood studios. Roll the cameras....

Warren Miller is skiing’s greatest ambassador, its most entertaining storyteller, and the godfather of action sports filmmaking. He produced, directed and narrated films from 1961 until 1988. His production company has kept up the tradition of making a film each year that they tour around the country. This year’s ALL TIME is currently making the rounds. Narrated by and featuring Olympic gold-medalist Jonny Moseley, ALL TIME dives deep into the stuff of which snowy dreams are made. 

From the evolution of mountain culture and the birth of ski towns to icons and innovators like the original hotdoggers. ALL TIME is a celebration of the past seven decades that defined winter sports. It isn’t a greatest hits collection, rather a film experience reimagining the moments that got us to where we are today, the compelling people, and the outlandish locations in the history of skiing and snowboarding. It’s a nod to the legacy of Warren Miller and a glimpse into where the sport will go next.

From humorous antics to awe-inspiring scenery from around the world to exhilarating ski scenes, you can find the complete archive of Warren Miller’s films here.

And Warren Miller’s autobiography is on our list of favorite books about skiing.

From the depth of the creative visuals to the groundbreaking, never-been-done-before scale of the shoot, Afterglow is hailed as one of the most cinematically profound ski movies ever made. This short film is shot entirely at night and is as beautiful as it is eerie. It uses massive lights and features skiers wearing custom-made LED suits ripping down slopes in British Columbia and Alaska.

Follow Jeremy Jones and other top freeriders as they travel to the world’s snowboarding meccas and venture past the boundaries of helicopters, snowmobiles, and lifts to explore untouched realms. Hang on tight as Jeremy faces the biggest challenges he has ever encountered in snowboarding. All night hikes, sleeping on peaks, camping 65 miles from civilization, 20 below temperatures, 10 day storms, and 20 mile days bring the adventure back into riding. Deeper puts the viewer in the athletes’ boots, from the trials and tribulations to mind-boggling breakthroughs in the sport of snowboarding. The athletes also discuss backcountry and avalanche safety, and risks associated with extreme sports.

Valhalla is a daring spin on the classic ski film format. With dynamic ski and snowboard action complimenting a narrative-driven approach, the film follows one man's spellbinding path to the North. Weaving story and character with award-winning, face-melting backcountry ski and snowboard cinematography, Valhalla is a vivid explosion of color, storytelling, powder snow, and riveting nostalgia. The Denver Post writes, "Valhalla breaks the helicopter-worn narrative of ski movies that pitch audacious skiing against a backdrop of blaring tunes with little story and cliché chats with surf-lilted athletes who are always 'just stoked to be here riding with my friends."

All.I.Can is a stunning exploratory essay that compares the challenges of big mountain skiing to the challenges of global climate change. Shot on 6 continents over 2 years, the world’s best skiers deliver inspirational performances while ground-breaking cinematography expands our vision of the natural world.

Journey through Morocco’s majestic desert peaks, Greenland’s icy fjords, Chile’s volcanic craters, Alaskan spine walls, and more. 

For history buffs and anyone interested in the 10th Mountain Division, this film by Vail’s own Chris Anthony, is a must-see. It’s an award- winning documentary about the legendary World War II 10th Mountain Division, based out of Camp Hale, Colorado. Mission Mount Mangart tells the story of the first American ski troop. The film showcases the soldiers' resilience and determination in the face of adversity and offers a unique and captivating perspective on a pivotal moment in history. The film won Best Historical Documentary at the Cannes World Film Festival in 2021.

A classic starring Robert Redford and Gene Hackman. David Chappellet, played by Redford, is a cocky ski racer who joins the U.S. ski team and clashes with the team's coach, played by Gene Hackman. Chappellet is a mean-spirited skier who is focused only on becoming a champion and shows little interest in being a team player. The film received positive reviews upon its theatrical release and film critic Roger Ebert at the time called it “the best movie ever made about sports – without really being about sports at all.”

If you’d rather don the headphones and listen while you lift (to strengthen those legs for some powder runs this season), check out our list of favorite podcasts about skiing and snowboarding.


If you’d rather curl up with a good book, here’s our list of our favorite books about skiing.



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