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For the week of January 16 - 22, 2002

  Arts & Entertainment

Community School brings Mountain Film Festival

Express Arts Editor

"The way of acquiescence leads to moral and spiritual suicide. The way of violence leads to bitterness in the survivors and brutality in the destroyers. But, the way of nonviolence leads to redemption and the creation of the beloved community."

Those are the words of Martin Luther King Jr. after a visit to India in 1959. They are, perhaps, as relevant today as they were then; maybe more so.

To celebrate King’s birthday, Monday, Jan. 21, The Community School is bringing the Mountain Film Festival to its theater Wednesday, Jan. 23, through Friday, Jan. 25. During the day, students of The Community School and students throughout the Blaine County school system will view the films and participate in discussions afterward.

The films will be screened nightly at 7 p.m. for the general public.

The evening program of the Mountain Film Festival comprises 17 films: a number of shorts and one feature slotted for each night.

There is a wide array of films, many with a theme of cultural awareness, others focusing more on outdoor adventurers and their exploits.

Nigel Wittington, director of the Middle School, said he would like the students who participate in the day program, and adults for that matter, to come away with more than a sense of tolerance. He stressed that "acceptance" might be a more relevant term in today’s cultural climate. Tolerance might be the requisite first step in achieving King’s "dream." But "acceptance" is ultimately necessary if, as King said in his 1963 "I Have a Dream" speech, his four children are to" … one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

The three features to be shown during the festival are "Berserk in the Antarctic," "The Great Dance: A Hunter’s Story" and "Vision Man."

The first details the experiences of a 19-year-old, inexperienced sailor who sets sail from his native Norway to Antarctica.

"The Great Dance" is the story of Nqate, a hunter in the Kalahari Desert of Southern Africa. The film reveals a culture and life very different from what most may be familiar with.

The Friday night feature, "Vision Man," looks at the essential elements of the life of a Greenlander. Utuniarsuak Avike is 87 years old and his memories provide a bridge between a traditional culture and the modern world.

Each night a number of short films will be shown with the feature. Some of the shorts slotted for the festival include, "Ode to Avalanche," by Ken Bailey; "Skiing on Pine Needles," a film about Dick Durrance; "Shroud of Silence: Gender Apartheid in Afghanistan"; and "First Base: Angels of Gravity," a film about Norwegian base-jumper Andre Bach.

Another highlight of the festival will be a presentation Friday night by Dr. Geoff Tabin. Tabin is an opthamologist and mountaineer who has performed over 10,000 cataract surgeries for patients in Nepal.

The discussion by Tabin will touch on how one person can make a difference in the world, how to prepare oneself for service to humanity and what someone like Tabin gains from his work.

Tickets are $30 for a three-day pass or $12 for a day pass.


The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.