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Swift, Silent, Deep... The JH Airforce

post #1 of 60
Thread Starter 
Wednesday, Feb. 25, 7:00 p.m.
The first true historical documentation of hardcore ski culture in the United States, “Swift Silent Deep” explores the roots of North America's most infamous ski fraternity, the Jackson Hole Air Force, and the beginnings of the modern American ski bum. Starring JHAF founders Benny Wilson and Howard Henderson, the film features many familiar faces in the action sports world, such as Warren Miller, Scot Schmidt and the late Doug Coombs.

Nominated for Best Documentary at the 2009 X-Dance Action Sports Film Festival, Klaczkiewicz and Beauchamp spent two years crafting this journey from the beginning of the American ski industry through the big mountain revolution of Alaska. “Swift Silent Deep” is a must see film for every skier in America.

Note: “Swift Silent Deep” contains some adult language and references; viewer discretion is advised.
post #2 of 60
Thread Starter 

This should be a very cool ski movie.  I'll post when I get back on Weds night.   

post #3 of 60

We were going to head down this morning to get tickets but noticed you posted it was sold out.  Damn...this looked good and is for a very good cause.

post #4 of 60


Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post


This should be a very cool ski movie.  I'll post when I get back on Weds night.   

I'll look for you there.  We've got a little group that's going. 


Howie texted me last week with a heads-up so we got our tickets then.  I'm glad to see it's going to be a full house and it's great of them to donate the proceeds to the avi team. 

post #5 of 60

 Wow, this is sooo cool.  I wish I were able to attend.

post #6 of 60
Thread Starter 

My wife is good friends with Howie, so I think we got good tickets early.  We have an unexpected house guest who we are hoping to get a ticket for.  I'm not surprised to see an early sell out on this one.  It will be good crowd watching for sure.  I had to get someone to cover my Patrol shift so I could go.  

post #7 of 60

Here is a link to the teaser for this flick. Premiere is tonight, should be great.



post #8 of 60
Thread Starter 

Bob Peters just hooked up our guest with an extra ticket....  GO BOB!  I was watching the trailer on swiftsilentdeep.com  I am PSYCHED!   

post #9 of 60
Thread Starter 

I really enjoyed this movie!  I sat with Bob Peters and some of his friends in the nosebleed section and had a great time.  I knew a lot of people in the movie.  One of the funniest parts was watching Howie going off about Doug Coombs....  "he was a just a rock star man... he was like freakin Ziggy Stardust... I mean watching him ski was like looking into the sun".  I hope this film can be released in the form we watched it in.  I sounds as if they might have to edit some of the language and acquire the rights to the great sound track they had.  The figure that I heard was $50,000 per song.  Ouch.  It was funny to see Howie with all of his hair.  Dave Miller told me that some of the young girls sitting near him said "wow you were really good looking"  Ouch again.  I was also saddened when they showed the petition to reinstate Doug Coombs after his banishment and the first name was Tommy Moe....  The second name was Joel Roof who died in an avalanche on Glory Bowl the following year leaving a pregnant wife behind.  Things were a lot different when I first arrived in 89.  We all owe a huge debt to the air force for changing skiing and getting the boundaries opened.  Howie is exactly right when he compares Coombs, Hunt, Wilson, and the original crew to rock and roll.  They are Zeppelin and the Who.  They did it first and everyone who comes after is influenced by them if they know it or not.  Watch for the actual public release in fall 2009

post #10 of 60

I watched the trailer and am dying to see the whole thing.

post #11 of 60

I gotta say that I loved the movie. (and both big toes, too!) 


tetonpwdrjunkie sat with us and we were surrounded by hard core skiers young and old.  It was the hottest ticket in Jackson last night and the buzz on the mountain this morning was just electric.


This movie stands up any way you want to look at it. 


You can watch it simply as ski porn and be perfectly happy.  You can watch it as a study on some of America's most significant ski history over the last few decades and be fascinated.  You can watch it as a chronicle of an ugly time in Jackson Hole's history (Air Force versus JH Ski Patrol) that culminated in a landmark change in policy that has affected nearly every big-mountain ski resort in America.  And, you can watch it as a funny, touching, and occasionally tragic story of a group of people who helped shape the direction of skiing worldwide.


This movie does an incredible job of capturing the exhuberance, passion, wackiness and joy of the members of the Air Force and those around them.  I patricularly loved the depth of respect the movie shows toward Pepi Stiegler.  It details his arrival as the first Ski School Director at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort and the influence that his aerial exploits had on the youngsters on the mountain.  One of those youngsters was Benny Wilson, who would eventually become the founder and "Captain" of the Jackson Hole Air Force.  In the film, Benny recalls watching Pepi as a kid and just being awed at Pepi's gracefulness and ease in the air.  Benny's birthday present for his 9th birthday was a private lesson with Pepi to learn to jump - and the rest was history.


I just loved everything about this movie and I can't wait to see it again.  When the film started, the lights were down, the screen is almost dark, and you start to make out a frame FILLED with big, dumping snowflakes as the eerie first notes of "Riders on the Storm" play in the background.  I got goosebumps.




See it as soon as you can.

post #12 of 60
Thread Starter 
 If you choose to buy the DVD, buy it from swiftsilentdeep.com and the filmmaker will get a larger percentage of the sale than through other vendors.  Second best is from TGR.
post #13 of 60
I bought it (through the website).  I watched it.  I immediately felt inadequate in my skiing and once again realized I grew up in the wrong part of the country.  Absolutely worth the price and then some!
post #14 of 60
its a library must.
post #15 of 60
 I picked up two copies of this to have for ESA Raffles, maybe I need to keep one for myself, eh?
post #16 of 60
yeah, it should be mandatory viewing for all skiers who ski or want to ski BC.  
post #17 of 60
Best film since Blizzard.
post #18 of 60
Thanks for all the support and positive feedback. It means more than you know! We recently showed the film to a standing room only crowd in Boulder, CO and on the same day, showed it in Seattle. At the Seattle show, Warren Miller the man himself showed up.

For updates on what we're doing, head over to our homepage. Right now we have a contest to win a trip to Jackson Hole. It's free to sign up and those who do up get a code for 20 percent off our DVD. Hope that stokes you guys out.

Cheers, JK.
post #19 of 60
Jon, welcome and its an honor to have you posting here!  Any chance to get a poster signed by the AF founders? 

Big fan of Waiting Game 
post #20 of 60
Trailer looks amazing. Can't wait to see it.

Jon any chance there will be a screening in the east?
post #21 of 60
"If you can remember the 80's, you probably weren't skiing then."

post #22 of 60
Thread Starter 
 I used to ski with RJ almost every day in the mid 90s.  He no longer skis because his knees gave out.  He just got a new pair and seems to move around better now but I don't think we will see him skiing again.
post #23 of 60
Got the DVD yesterday and it went straight into the player.  Really enjoyed this film.

Did the DVD version end up being much different than the original?  It does have a bunch of extras included.  The original JHAF film Blue Sky, White Death was fun to watch.  Something tells me I'll be finding out about some of the others in just a few minutes =)

Ya know, I quit skiing in '81 because I was pretty bored with Michigan hills and too poor/lazy to think about relocating.  Man, I wonder how different my life would be if I had motivated and moved to the mountains then.  I remember the western resorts that I dreamed about skiing were Snowbird, Steamboat and Jackson Hole (a tram thing?).  If I had moved to JH instead of floundering at the University maybe I would have known some of those guys.  Now there's an educational opportunity I would have taken advantage of!
post #24 of 60
Thread Starter 
 Howard Henderson and his Brother RJ are Michigan boys and UM alumni.  You might have some common ground with them.  I haven't really watched the DVD with the volume on.  I heard that the biggest change was the exclusion of the Jimi Hendrix Voodoo Chile Slight Return segment.  I'm not sure what replaced it.
post #25 of 60
We recently showed Swift.Silent.Deep. in NYC on October 30. The next east coast show will be in Stowe, VT show on November 28. We're trying to show it in as many locations as possible and are working on expanding the tour. Check out our tour page for the most updated info.

Thanks, JK
post #26 of 60
"Did the DVD version end up being much different than the original? "

Not much changed from the first cut to the DVD. We tightened it up a bit and had to clear some high profile songs with record companies, per usual in the ski film making world. In the end I am really proud of the outcome and feel that little was compromised from the original vision we all had from the get go. It's a great story that I hope you all enjoy.

post #27 of 60
Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post

That's what she said.
post #28 of 60
Originally Posted by JonKLACZKIEWICZ View Post

In the end I am really proud of the outcome and feel that little was compromised from the original vision we all had from the get go. It's a great story that I hope you all enjoy.

You should be proud.  It is a great story and very well told.
post #29 of 60
Watched the DVD last night.  Very cool movie.  As noted above, the fact that there is an actual storyline makes it a different kind of ski movie.  Should be an addition to everyone's ski film library.
post #30 of 60
Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post

 Howard Henderson and his Brother RJ are Michigan boys
Yeah, I noticed that.... part of what had me thinking in that direction
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