Films about the mountains and their people have always been a source of fascination. They've inspired many an adventure and importantly, helped us all appreciate how others are affected by the places we love. Unfortunately during lock down many of those that bring us this inspiration have struggled. Unable to show their work at festivals and film nights, exposure and more importantly, income, have been badly affected. But there are ways in which we can help.
For some time Matt Heason and the team at the Sheffield Adventure Film Festival have been publicising films from their cancelled 2020 event. Many of these are free, some are pay-per-view. Why not support them and spread the word? There are so many brilliant films it's hard to choose a real stand out - but one I'd strongly recommend is Focus. Why not try it? Perhaps go one step further and become a patron?
The organisers of the Banff Film Festival have also done their bit to highlight the huge range of mountain films that are now available. They've selected no fewer than 28 films that can be watched for free on their website. Why not start with a short film like For The Love Of Mary? Simply brilliant.
As we emerge from lock down there will be plenty of opportunities to see more mountain films. Why not start with some drive-in cinema in the Peak District? On Wednesday 22nd July there will be a showing of Piano To Zanskar, winner of the Grand Prize for Best Film at ShAFF 2020. This film tells the story of 68 year old piano tuner Desmond O'Keefe who decides to transport a 100 year old, 80 kg upright piano from his workshop in London to a primary school in Lingshed, Zanskar. What could possibly go wrong?
The event will be held at Hope Valley Garden Centre in Bamford at 9.30pm on Wednesday 22nd July. Further details can be found here.
I couldn't resist recommending one more film. If you haven't seen A Mile An Hour it's worth checking out. Set in rural Australia, it centres around Beau, a keen runner who runs a marathon over 24 hours and fills the gaps with some interesting tasks along the way!