I’ve been excited about Pretty Faces ever since I heard about it way back in December. Here’s a refresher: Despite the fact that women make up around 40% of the skiing population and about 30% of the adventure sports film viewership, only 14% of the athletes in major ski films this past season were female. And this was a record of female representation, up from 9% the previous season.*
So Lynsey Dyer decided to do something about it. A phenomenal world-class skier who was named Powder Magazine’s Skier of the Year, Lynsey is also the founder of SheJumps.org, an organization dedicated to encouraging women to participate in outdoor activities. Lynsey made it her mission to produce an all-female ski movie. That took some doing. She used Kickstarter to raise most of the funding, eventually collecting enough to make her dream a reality. (I interviewed about this here.)
The movie just had its premiere showing in Boulder, Colorado. And though I wasn’t lucky enough to be there, one of the members of TheSkiDiva.com community, Monique Mudama, was in the audience. I asked her to write a review, and with pleasure, I present it here:
Pretty Faces: A Review
By Monique Mudama
It’s no surprise to me that Lynsey Dyer’s crew picked Boulder for the debut showing of Pretty Faces. And it’s not much of a surprise that the show sold out, either. Boulder Theater was packed with people — more women than men, but plenty of both — to celebrate both skiing and women skiers, and to build some serious stoke for the coming ski season.
Pretty Faces. What can I say? I loved this movie. It’s strange, but a lot of ski movies don’t have enough actual skiing. Pretty Faces does not suffer from this problem. It delivers shot after shot of women hucking cliffs, charging through pow, and owning steep descents. Professional athletes talking about why they ski. Little girls giggling as they learn how to ski. Middle-aged women bouncing up and down in their chairs, talking about how excited they are every morning to ski. I’ve never seen a ski movie that so completely represented how I feel about skiing — giddy, gleeful, grateful. Maybe a little obsessed.
And the skiing. I was captivated. As the audience around me hooted and stomped and screamed whenever another female athlete was introduced, I just kept leaning forward in my chair and whispering, “Oh man. Oh my god.” The skiing was so beautiful, so aggressive, so perfect. I ached to be there, skiing those lines. To be someone who could ski like that.
To be honest, once an athlete is bundled up in ski gear and getting face shots while skiing bottomless pow, you can’t always tell if that’s a man or a woman. But I don’t think that’s the point. The point is that when I’m skiing and I see a guy ski an aggressive line or huck a rock, I appreciate it, but it doesn’t impact how I ski. But when I’m skiing and I see a woman ski an aggressive line or fly off a jump? It’s different. Suddenly, it seems possible. Pretty Faces is an entire movie filled with women expanding my concept of what is possible.
Before seeing this movie, I went primarily to show my support for the idea — to help prove that an all-female skiing movie was viable. And that’s still a good reason to go. But a better reason to go is this: Pretty Faces is one of the best ski movies I’ve seen. Go watch it.
For more info on Pretty Faces, go here.
*Data from the Pretty Faces’ Kickstarter website.