JF Houle is just 29 years old, but his latest film project starts off with a comprehensive look back at his ski career. Over footage from past competition wins and film segments, Houle talks earnestly about how skiing shaped his life. Though the narrative is a familiar one—a “simple passion,” as Houle calls it on the Houligan movie’s website, takes a young skier on an inspiring journey—the film is definitely worth a watch. The Quebec native’s strong suit is urban, and Houligan certainly doesn’t disappoint. It took the iF3 award this fall for best urban movie, and there’s no shortage of creative skiing. Like most great urban films, Houligan doesn’t skimp on showing the planning and many failed attempts that go into the most impressive urban shots.
The project took two years to put together and was an almost entirely independent production. Houle and his friend Paul Bergeson spearheaded the project, despite their lack of experience in filmmaking. With cameos from friends Alexi Godbout, Vincent Gagnier, and Phil Casabon (among others) and plenty of old school, home-shot footage from Houle’s early years, the film is a truly personal take on a ski career still in the making. The final result is a thoughtful look at a unique skier thriving in one of the most enigmatic ski-subcultures out there.
You can watch the full-length film online for free here.