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<em>A Life Ascending</em>

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A Life Ascending


Outdoor Adventure Porn at Arlington

UCSB Brings Best of Banff Mountain Film Festival to Town


The world’s best outdoor adventure porn—those films that focus on mountain climbing, river kayaking, BASE jumping, skateboarding, and other dangerous forms of recreation—gets aired every year at the Banff Mountain Film Festival. After the big unveil, though, the fest meanders its way around the country to scare, inspire, and entertain the masses. Each winter, UCSB Arts & Lectures brings the pain and pleasure to Campbell Hall for two nights of thrills. But this time around, Banff is heading to the Arlington Theatre for some big-scale action. The Best of Banff screens on Tuesday, February 22, and Wednesday, February 23, at 7:30 p.m. Here are eight to watch.

1. Life Cycles: The life of a bicycle crashes into gorgeous cinematography in this ode to the world’s most efficient machine, which can jump out of barns, cruise through the woods, and conquer urban landscapes before crumbling. (Screens February 22.)

2. The Asgard Project: The “because it was there” argument sums up Banff’s best climbing flick, in which a team of climbers ascend a pillar of stone on Baffin Island, deep in the Arctic Circle, and then jump off. (Screens February 22.)

3. WildWater: Former UCSB Professor Rod Nash is just one of this film’s many hardcore river kayakers, who explain what the rugged sport means to them in often spiritual, always insightful ways. Expect plenty of waterfalls, too. (Screens February 22.)

4. Chimæra: The most technologically showy entry, this short film uses a 1,000-frame-per-second camera to depict the skiing experience, from coffee and waxing to full-force shredding, each fraction of a second at a time. (Screens February 22.)

5. Last Paradise: Did you have any clue that a ragtag bunch of Kiwi buddies basically invented wakeboarding, snowboarding, bungie jumping, big-wave surfing, and hang glider-skiing decades ago? Here’s their story. (Screens February 23.)

6. The Longest Way: Watch a man grow a beard as he walks thousands of miles across China in this five-minute video montage that won best Banff short flick. (Screens February 23.)

7. Into Darkness: Follow experienced cavers as they spelunk their way into the most crammed corners of deep, maze-like caves, and learn how the thrill of getting stuck powers their hobby. (Screens February 23.)

8. A Life Ascending: The Banff People’s Choice winner enters the home and family of revered mountain guide Ruedi Beglinger, whose snowy life deep in the British Columbia wilderness straddles the dangers and beauties of nature. (Screens February 23.)

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