The snow has started falling in the mountains and ski resorts are opening for the first time this season, so we thought it was the perfect time to present some of our all-time favorite skiing and snowboarding movies. While favorite does not necessarily equal good, we’ve compiled a list of our top 10 classic ski flicks.
Dumb and Dumber
The 1994 classic Dumb and Dumber features imbecile best friends Lloyd and Harry, played by Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, who discover a suitcase full of money. The two make their way to Aspen in hopes of returning the loot but find themselves the subject of a manhunt. There are some great scenes from the skiing mecca, including a comedic look at the high society that makes Aspen famous. You can truly watch this movie 100 times and still laugh.
Hot Tub Time Machine
When Hot Tub Time Machine came out in 2010 it just felt like an instant cult classic, and that’s exactly what happened as it went virtually straight to video. The all-star cast led by Rob Corddry and John Cusack portrays four childhood buddies who meet up for a reunion at a ski resort. It’s when they dip into the hot tub time machine that they have an opportunity to relive their past. There isn’t a whole lot of skiing in this movie, but it takes place at a ski resort, and it’s really funny.
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Released in 2014, The Grand Budapest Hotel takes place at a popular European ski resort. Although there is not many scenes of actual skiing, if any, it’s a wonderful flick that’s carved out of the unique style of director Wes Anderson. Harkening back to a golden age of hospitality in 1930s Budapest, the story spans generations and stars Ralph Fiennes.
Before there was Frozen the Disney musical there was another movie named Frozen and without an annoying soundtrack. This 2010 drama about three skiers that get stranded on a chairlift will you have thinking twice before taking a final run in the dark. When it came out in 2010, this flick promised to do to skiing what Jaws did to swimming in the ocean. Turns out it didn’t quite do that. It’s still a horrifying movie as the friends are forced to make life or death decisions, and some don’t turn out very good.
Back in 1972, Snowball Express captivated youngsters for a generation. This Disney classic depicts the story of a New Yorker who inherits an old Rocky Mountain ski resort and revives it with his wife and family. We all might remember the famous run-away skier scene where he soars down most of the slope backwards.
There really hasn’t been many movies since the 1970 release of Downhill Racer that dramatically depict the competitive sport of downhill ski racing. This classic flick was shot in Sweden and features Robert Redford as a smug skier who clashes with the team’s coach played by Gene Hackman. Probably not the best movie of the decade, but it’s got an all-star cast and some old-school skiing scenes.
For anyone who ever dreamed of working at a ski resort back in the day there’s the cult classic Ski Patrol released in 1990 that probably had a lot to do with it. The movie is also truly terrible, but its skiing scenes will take you back to the neon age. The story follows a long-time owner of a ski lodge who faces a cutthroat businessman intent on replacing the lodge with a mega-resort. But leave it to the crazy ski patrol crew to save the day. Unless you’re watching this flick for nostalgic purposes, we probably wouldn’t recommend it.
Following the relative success of Ski Patrol in 1990, another movie along the same lines a year later emerged called Ski School. Drawing on the same themes of slackers and pretty women, Ski School follows a group of friends who are skilled skiers and devoted party animals who battle a group of preppies in a skiing contest. Yes, the plot sounds stupid and so is the movie.
Never one to ruin a good thing, Hollywood turned once again to the Ski School/ Patrol formula with the 2005 movie Frostbite, but this time the setting is a snowboarding academy. Oh, how times change. Featuring teenage porn star Traci Lords, Frostbite is the story of a slacker – yet again – who postpones reality and responsibility by enrolling in a snowboarding academy. Babes and hijinks ensue.
Drawing once again on a classic theme, Out Cold released in 2001 is another about a group of misfits who engage in a skiing, or in this case snowboarding competition. It’s no-holds barred comedy action, depending on your tastes. Although this movie did not receive rave reviews, it features Zach Galifinakis and is said to have its moments. The story follows a snowboarder’s plans to start his own snowboard park and features some pretty cool riding.
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