words / pat moore
photos / scotty arnold

This past January Vans Snowboarding released their first team film, Landline. From the first sight at the world premiere in Denver, CO, it has been boasted as an “instant classic” and a “staple film” in the current state of snowboarding. The mix of top tier snowboarding and beautiful filmmaking, exclusively using 16 mm film, is an ode to the past while a push towards the future. The production value of the editing and music selection leaves you tapping your feet and itching to go ride yourself. Tanner Pendleton was the film’s director and he, with the assistance of his crew, created a product that truly portrays snowboarding as an art form. Something that so many filmmakers have strived for, but so many have fell short.

The cast spans decades from legendary riders like Bryan Iguchi and Jamie Lynn to some of Vans’ newest members such as Cole Navin and Jake Kuzyk. If there’s one thing that’s for certain, the riders went all-in on this project, spending months on trips in places all around the globe: Russia, Scandinavia, Japan, Canada and even Iceland. With two years of footage to work with, Tanner cherry-picked only the best shots, where the riders and the images were the most aesthetically pleasing. The trick and spot selections are unbelievable, with so many of the shots leaving you to pause and say, “How did they think of that?” The progression of snowboarding in this film went far beyond an additional rotation or an extra flip. It was portrayed in the way the riders and the cinematographers captured snowboarding, where the look of the shot and its feeling was as valuable as the trick itself.

Snowboarding has evolved a lot over the years and with so many of the classic and groundbreaking production companies fading out there has been a strong urge amongst the fans and industry alike for something fresh. Even though Landline is a step forward in snowboard videos, you can certainly see influences from a lot of the classics. Touches of great videos such as The Garden to more recent milestones like Burning Bridges can be felt throughout the 45-minutes of play. With many new filmmakers like Tanner Pendleton now taking the reigns of snowboarding, their appreciation and motivation from classic snowboarding is very respectable. There’s a lot of excitement over what’s to come from all snowboard media in the coming years, but that isn’t to take away from the unmatched support that Vans committed to, specifically to Tanner’s vision.

For 25 years now Vans has held unyielding support for snowboarding. From their first days of making snowboard boots in 1993 till today, their values have always stayed the same. An example of this is in their team members. Looking back to their original lineup of Shaun Palmer, Jamie Lynn and Circe Wallace, Vans has always supported the outcasts and the champions of the core riders. That legacy continues on today with team riders such as Mike Rav, Arthur Longo and Sam Taxwood, these are some of your favorite rider’s favorite riders. The outpour of support for Landline after the world premiere was a justification of that. With Instagram posts and comments from so many of the industry’s pros and even unassociated brands giving praise to their favorite parts and to Tanner himself, the support has been unprecedented.

In so many ways Landline wasn’t only a success for Vans, but a success for snowboarding as a whole. There is no doubt that the personal connection of social media and instant verification of short edits aren’t going anywhere (we love all of that too) but the polished execution of films like Landline is something special, something that every snowboarder can be proud of. All of us appreciate the eye and the hard work of Tanner and his crew, Jake Price, Harry Hagen, and Skylar Brent. Anytime talented people like this pour their efforts into snowboarding, everyone benefits.