Too often, true heroes do not get medals. Which is not to say that Kevin Pearce, the subject of this unflinching film by Oscar-nominated director Lucy Walker, has not had his share of podium time. He’s one of the few snowboarders in the world to nab the gold from Shaun White, but his heroics have nothing to do with launching himself higher, making evermore convoluted spins or perfecting impossible landings. It has to do with more difficult matters — like will, spirit and acceptance — and that’s why Pearce deserves a medal of the highest luster. So, too, does every member of his family for helping him recover from a traumatic brain injury that he incurred during practice. Walker, who has screened Waste Land (Mountainfilm 2010), The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom (Mountainfilm 2012) and Secrets of the Mongolian Archer, received a Mountainfilm Commitment Grant for The Crash Reel.
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