Art and Entertainment
In 1993 Hollywood produced the movie Philadelphia. It was a film about Andrew Beckett (Tom Hanks), a gay lawyer at a prestigious law firm, who was wrongfully dismissed because he has AIDS.
It’s not difficult to see how life in a band is a lot like a marriage. There needs to be certain chemistry between members. Life on the road and the creation of music involves decision-making and compromises for the good of all players, and it’s pretty difficult to continue happily when there isn’t a shared vision of the future. It’s not difficult to see because it is the relationship between people.
Like a lot of great ideas, the Fernie Mountain Film Festival was conceived on a skiing trip and born just four months later after an intensive planning process. Four years on, Brian Bell is blown away by the support and interest he’s seen in the festival. He says that selecting the films is still a lot of fun and the possibilities are endless.
Have you ever been stared down by a grizzly? Have you looked into a free-flowing river so clear you can make out every grain of sand on the bottom?
Have you ever seen the Flathead River Valley?
When I asked people this question their answer was often “no”. Even people who have lived in Fernie their whole lives. Outside of Fernie, people had never even heard of the Flathead.
The Raven’s Gift: A Scientist, A Shaman, and Their Remarkable Journey through the Siberian Wilderness by Jon Turk
In December, I had the privilege of reading a pre-publication version of Jon Turk’s The Raven’s Gift in manuscript form. This month, we all get the privilege of having Jon launch the real thing right here in Fernie. On January 22, you can hear Jon speak about the trials and tribulations that led to his startling and revelatory third book – a memoir that questions some of Western culture’s primary modes of thought and being.
Zombies and film go together like peanut butter and jam. They are a mainstay of the horror movie genre.
The first modern zombie movie, Night of the living Dead, was created independently in 1968 by George Romero. The film is considered a classic and spawned a number of other splatter-flicks including Hell of the Living Dead and Return of the Living Dead.
Romero’s version of the zombie-monster has inspired numerous film-makers in recent times to create such movies as 28 Days Later, a post-apocalyptic gore-fest starring Cillian Murphy, Christopher Eccelston, and Naomi Harris.
So you’ve put in a full day on the mountain, you’ve apres’d your ski boots off and you’re scrubbed, buffed and full of sushi. What next? Well, do you know that Fernie has more film screenings per capita than any other town in Canada? Okay, I made that bit up; but it could be true, - we really do love film here, and there’s no shortage of great screenings in more genres than you can shake a snowboard at.
You walk into a bar on a cold winter’s night and its warmth greets you. Some folks at the back are laughing and talking, but the ones closer to the stage are quiet. You notice the band on stage and immediately recognize something familiar. When the singer’s closed eyes open and alight on you, the moment lasts, like she is singing to you, singing the words right out of you.
I think I realized that my job in life was to make art when I was in Grade 4. Actually I know it was Grade 4 and I remember the exact moment. We all had a cheesy art task to paint some still life fruit with tempra paints…everyone’s work looked like they had done it with the wrong hand but mine was surprisingly accurate (for a Grade 4). My teacher came up to me and said, “I know what you will be when you grow up.” He was right.
We’ve all heard the cries that the music industry is dying, but the cries are more bombastic than anything. Music is older than writing and older than words, and it’s impossible to imagine a world without it. A good band or DJ sets the mood, whether it’s wafting out of a home stereo or blaring out of the bar’s double-stacks.
I buy books for Christmas presents. Always and for everybody. Whenever possible, I stick to Canadian books. For the price of a decent bottle of wine, a book gives the recipient an art object, hours of entertainment, inspiration, a space for productive introspection, a cast of imaginary friends, and an excuse to spend the day curled up by the fire.
The American film industry has produced many films about corporate and political corruption and the brave men and women who fight against it. From Eight Days of the Condor to The Insider, Silkwood to Michael Clayton, all of these films feature protagonists who worked for truth and justice, and who, while flawed, are still likeable, and the kind of people you want to cheer for.