Imagine surviving in a tent outside in the winter. For six months straight. Now imagine doing it with your 60-year-old mother. This Mountain Life, an award-winning documentary that has played to packed audiences across the country, is coming to The Roxy Theatre in Revelstoke. The film follows intrepid duo Martina Halik and her 60-year-old mother Tania as they attempt a treacherous 6 month ski tour of the Coast Range from Squamish, B.C. to Alaska — a trip that had only been done once before, and never by an all-woman team.
“I’ve been filming recently with BBC Planet Earth team for the next landmark series” says Vancouver-based director/cinematographer Grant Baldwin, “and I wanted to bring that cinematic quality to a BC location and story.” He’s quick to note that strong visuals alone are not enough to carry a feature documentary. “We also were incredibly lucky to find truly amazing subjects who were willing to let us share their stories on camera.”
Completely shot in the mountains of British Columbia, the women’s 2300 km journey through a relentless mountain wilderness is artfully woven between a handful of diverse portraits of people with a true passion for a BC mountain lifestyle: a group of nuns inhabiting a mountain retreat to be closer to God; a photographer is buried in an avalanche; a seasoned alpinist (Barry Blanchard for those in the climbing community); a focused snow artist; a couple who has been living off grid for nearly 50 years.
Filming the documentary in such remote places was a momentous challenge “Keeping the gear working in -25c was a struggle, I spooned the main camera in my sleeping bag to bring it back to life on a few occasions,” admits Baldwin. “We got stuck in storms leading to unplanned nights in the alpine and found ourselves lost above an icefall on one shoot. Nobody was injured in the end; we were just a bit shaken.”
This Mountain Life will be playing at the Roxy Theatre, 7 p.m., Monday, February 25.