Words by Tom Warnick
Photos courtesy of Stept Productions
As per every season, the boys at Stept Productions went harder than ever this year for their latest installment in a series of movies that continues to broaden the dichotomy between Stept and the rest of the industry. “Mutiny” is unique in that it is a movie about kids who ski rather than a ski movie. We were all over the country as usual, but we filmed a much wider variety of subject matter, including a music video in New York with Tribe GVNG (dropping soon), behind the scenes surgical footage, strippers whenever possible, and the biggest rail-to-drop ever done in the history of skiing, just to highlight a few outliers.
The banger segments are different depending on whom you talk to, as there are a few standard banger segs – there isn’t much you can put in words for those – coupled with more unorthodox segs that bring everything together perfectly. It is safe to say that all the segments come together to make a banger movie without a predominant segment standing out as the “best”, and if you can’t comprehend that mentality then watching Mutiny would be a good place to start. In terms of gnarly and consequential features, there is plenty of rawness being thrown around by everyone, but for once that’s not the only major theme to the film.
A large portion of the movie is devoted to eating shit and fucking up. Since the trailer drop, “Mutiny” has been under scrutiny for being too scary; many think that skiing should be portrayed more light-heartedly, and less like a horrific and terrifying shit show. The bails segment does watch like a horror/torture porn short, with exclusive surgical footage accompanying disturbing falls and ominous commentary. But what people don’t realize is that skiing IS all about fun for us. Although when you need to make a living doing it, it turns as primal and depraved as any other physical competition involving humans and money. Like modern day gladiators with the coliseum sold out, the audience is going to get a motherfucking show. I’m sure it evokes a form of grim entertainment to the objective onlooker, but I’ll be the first to admit that when your best friends are the gladiators, it can be scary as hell out there. However, you don’t win IF3 awards and cash checks by just filming yourself dicking around on the hill and smoking weed while having “fun.” As idealistic as that would be, trust me when I say that the market is just not there beyond however many Youtube views you acquire. I ski for fun all the time now, it’s great, I don’t really waste my time filming it but I damn sure won’t expect to get paid for it when I do.
There is a reason why Stept is on the forefront of an emerging industry that endorses dangerous behavior. The farther you run from it the faster the fear comes to follow. If Stept had not put out such gnarly content in the past we would probably be strapping GoPros to each other while making an ass out of ourselves to everyone at the party for Youtube views. As overly dramatic and grotesque as it may seem, this film simply depicts the reality of what the urban scene has come to. I’m not one to associate skiing with fear, after four traumatic knee surgeries, and countless minor surgeries, I think I get it. But I went out to Boston this year to film for Mutiny, and it didn’t take me long to realize how hard the rest of the crew was going. I wasn’t at all ready to step to the majority of spots we showed up at, so I quickly resorted to the position of “light technician” at most features, which consisted of setting up a few light kits and discreetly drinking nips of hard liquor while watching the action go down.
“Mutiny” has a few more atypical qualities that help make the film more Stept-esque than ever before. Shea has what is possibly the most demented major segment since Rory Silva in Wski106, but with some way burlier features, and real footage of their consequence thanks to our good friends at the hospital.
Joey’s cameo helps epitomize the perspective that Stept is just a bunch of friends who couldn’t give a fuck about the rest of the industry. Do any other movies this year throw a washed up 29 year-old bartender in between their most banger segments? Didn’t think so. Could they pull it off? If they cared about anything beyond shot aesthetics and editing, probably. But they didn’t because most production companies are just that, “production companies”. They put out the best shots in the most complimentary order for the best ratings, and leave the stragglers behind. Mutiny is a perfect example of how a production company can transcend the boundary between riders, producers and editors and be successful as a collective of friends.
Charlie’s signature style is highlighted with enough strippers and shenanigans to entertain even the most seasoned party animal, all perfectly cut with the juicy urban shots his fans have come to know and love. Charlie’s segment in Mutiny stands out from the rest with its rowdy amount of party footage. This really resonates with its end theme of getting broken off early. Partying too hard and after having your year shattered is a part of this sport that I can relate to all too well. Substituting partying for skiing to sustain that rush turns into a real option sometimes, and that mentality can be interpreted through this segment. What’s an urban movie these days without a stripper ripping off her “Cash and Cookies” ski mask while posing in a front of a plethora of kegs in a dark basement? It’s not shit if you’re full of piss and vinegar like the boys.