Two minutes and 30 seconds of skiers gone naked has brought national attention to the ski-snowboard movie "Valhalla," directed by Nick Waggoner and former Alaskan Ben Sturgulewski. "You may have already seen this clip, it's gone pretty viral,'' reports proud mom Carol Sturgulewski, nee Murkowski, of Anchorage. She's the sister of Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska; the daughter of former U.S. Senator and Gov. Frank Murkowski; the wife of Roe Sturgulewski, son of the first woman to run for governor of Alaska; and the successful author of "White House of the North."
Yeah, there's some family history here.
But son Ben decided to go off and make it on his own as a cameraman and filmmaker, and his company -- Sweetgrass Productions -- may have at least a cult hit with “Valhalla.”
"It’s one of skiing’s few big-budget, non-documentary films in the last 20 years that successfully tells a story,'' wrote John Stifter of Powder magazine.
But Huffington Post, like other mainstream media, immediately latched onto the nudity, observing that for a few moments "clothes are cast aside, and the skiers let it all hang out. Deep powder, inverted jumps, cliffs and -- in one wince-inducing scene -- tree branches. None are enough to slow down the naked skiers."
The more-discreet Denver Post at least waited until the second paragraph of its story below to talk about bare, white skin on snow. The Post claimed the film “takes the tired adventure genre to new heights."
The film is scheduled to be shown at the Bear Tooth Theatrepub in Anchorage on Nov. 21.
Watch the 'Valhalla' preview here:
Contact Craig Medred at craig(at)alaskadispatch.com