It’s that special time of the year right now, winter time. And nothing gets me in the winter mood more than an amazing collection of ski movies. In fact, ski movies Sundays are my favorite season tradition. Just grab some ski friends, pile on a couch with some brews, and let the snow magic begin!
But wait, there’s a problem. Finding ski movies. If you’re like me, you may have some DVDs lying around for some old school favorites. But, you also probably haven’t purchased any new ones, or maybe even own a DVD player. And when it comes to watching movies now, let’s face it, streaming is king. And although there is a bunch of ways to stream, Netflix is the most popular. And while the pickings are slim, there are still a few skiing and snowboarding movies available on Netflix that are worth checking out.
This is the first movies in a series of three that features and displays the crazy and amazing antics of big mountain snowboarder Jeremy Jones. If that name doesn’t ring a bell, it certainly should. Jeremy Jones is the founder and owner of freeride-oriented snowboard brand Jones snowboards, and started the non-profit organization POW (Protect Our Winters) which is an environmental group that works to combat global warming and educate people on climate change. He is also kind of a big deal himself, being one of the most highly decorated, popular, and revered big mountain snowboarders. In 2012, Jones was nominated as Adventurer of the Year by National Geographic Magazine. And as the great adventurer, he’s chronicled his excursions in a series of movies over the years: Higher (2014), Further (2012), and Deeper (2010). But guess what the best part is? Yep, they’re all on Netflix! So let’s start with the most recent film, Higher.
Higher is a film that follows Jones through tepid tree lines, down steep chutes, balancing spiky spines, and hurling off jagged cliffs in his comfort zone mountains like Jackson Hole and Lake Tahoe. It also takes you on a journey through more unique and exotic locations like the Himalayas in Nepal and the eastern mountain range in Alaska where the stakes are almost as high as the mountain’s peaks. And there is no one better than Jones to tackle these snow behemoths with the grace and style that keeps him on top of the snowboard game. If you’re looking for a sneak peek before you commit, check out the trailer below.
Before Higher, there was the Further, the second installment in this snowboarding trilogy. In this one, Jones and his buddies take on some of the most remote mountain ranges, furthering (eh eh? get it??) his mission to explore and conquer the backcountry. The un-ridden lines and untouched summits that get shredded are nothing to shake at, and the wide open powder lines that let these snowboarders surf the snow will make you drool. Further films in locations such as the Japanese Alps, the Atomfjella Mountains in Norway, the Karwendel Range in Austria, the Wrangell Mountains in Alaska, and the Sierra Mountains in California. Does this not sound like an amazing line up for some pow lines? It should also be noted that there’s some rumors going around about this actually being the best movie in the series. I won’t take sides, but you should see for yourself. If that’s not enough to entice you, check out the trailer below for FURTHER view. Okay, okay, I’ll stop.
We’ve finally reached it, the last installment in the Jeremy Jones snowboard series. Or the first, depending on how you look at it. Deeper premiered in 2010, and one of its major pieces was bringing split-boarding into the mainstream and onto the big screen for the masses. And by bringing split-boarding into the world of film, many of the well-known ski movie features dropped out like helicopters dropping off riders for lines, and snowmobiles cruising the powder looking for the best spots. This man-powered backcountry adventure includes all-night hikes, overnights on summit peaks, excursions through winter storms in negative degree weather, and taking place miles and miles from any civilization to reach the untouched realms of powder oblivion. Deeper is where Jones faces some of his biggest challenges, and rips through them like only he can. Check out more from this trailer.
Okay, now that we’re done with the Jeremy Jones love fest, let’s take a little departure into the documentary world of Patagonia (the company, not the place) that, of course, adds in a flash of activism. This Sweetgrass film was released in 2015 and it follows the story of an ongoing and fierce battle for British Columbia’s Jumbo Valley, a hotly contested location that highlights the tension between the protection of wilderness and the backcountry experience, and the ever-increasing development interests in wild places. This movie does include its fair share of ski and snowboard shots, but the main focus here is the fight the locals are having to preserve what we know and love, the wild snow covered mountains. Although a documentary about the attempt to build a ski resort sounds like something we would all get behind, watch this hour long gripping narrative and see if you don’t end up fighting to keep Jumbo wild.
SPOILER ALERT: This is not a ski movie. And if you know anything about this movie at all, you already know this and may be wondering why this movie makes the list at all. Without giving too much away, this Vin Diesel movie (that’s right, the man himself) is about an adrenaline junkie gone undercover agent for the US in Russia to bring down some classically stereotypical Russian terrorist bad guys. Vin Diesel, or should I say XXX, is known for his love for all things extreme, including sports like base jumping and car racing. And guess what sport makes a special appearance? That’s right, snowboarding. And I don’t want to give too much away, but I can confidently say that it’s one of the most outlandish, ridiculous, unrealistic, and amazing snowboarding scenes in the world of film. Honestly, check it out.
Keep in mind, this list is current as of January, 2018. Netflix is notorious for scratching movies and shows from their repertoire, so check out the films above before they’re gone. And be sure to check back with what’s new to the Netflix cue as the winter goes on!