Learning to Drown follows the life and career of professional snowboarder Jess Kimura as she unapologetically shatters stereotypes with her own brand of unwavering determination and go-for-broke mentality. After the tragic death of Jess’s partner at the height of her career, she spiraled into a cycle of self destruction, grief and despair. Compounded by head injuries and mental health issues, the circumstances seemed insurmountable. Jess’s only way out was within — as she faces her deepest fears, she reminds us that not all wounds are meant to heal.
“Jess Kimura is not afraid of falling. This beautiful film showcases her long journey of persistence and determination as she takes on one challenge after the other to become one of the most influential snowboarders of her time. Jess openly shares her deepest fear and suffering and reminds us of the importance of being our best selves, in this inspiring lifetime story of a hero.”
— Bachar Khattar, jury member of Banff Film Festival
Presented by: THE NORTH FACE / Production Company: Felt Soul Media / Director: Ben Knight / Producer: Travis Rummel / CO Producers: Robert Wassmer, Kaki Orr and Aimee Tetreault / Editor: Ben Knight / Original score: Trevor Doherty / Additional music: DL Incognito, Tourist and Odesza. Visual effects: [magazine sequence] Paul Harrison / TNF logo GFX: Barry Thompson / Animation: [dildo sequence] Yeshe Parks / Lead cinematography: Ben Knight / Underwater cinematography: Perrin James / Additional cinematography: Joe Carlino, Travis Rummel, George Knowles and Ben Bilocq / Asst. Editor Sarah Hamilton / Promotional photography by Chad Chomlack and Anastasia Chomlack
Additional snowboard footage: [super grateful to all of you] Mark Dangler, Karla Charlton, Donovon Skelton, Bobby Meeks, Sam Hiltner, Troy Erickson, Jesse Burtner, Christina Burtner,
Sean Genovese, Mark Clavin, Skylar Brent, Mikael Ahtikari, Hayden Rensch, Justin Hare, Pat Fenelon
Thank you: The North Face, Jaime Starr, Fran Dickson, Kimura family, Brittney and Jesse Dickson, Kieth and Kathleen Dickson, Mark Dangler, Ben Bilocq, Karla Charlton, Emily Higgins, Aimee Tetreault, Kaki Orr, Rob Wassmer, my sauna, Sandra Clark, Liina Potter, Jon Torres, Kyle DeLong, Scott Hibbert, Cara Williamson, Esther Kendall, Kristen Miller, Andy DeVelvis, Blue Montgomery, Riley Goodwin, George Kleckner, Cody Dresser, Evan Lefebvre, Sean Genovese, Dave Birnie, Mikey Scott, Pat Bridges, John Cavan, Marie-France Roy, Cam Sorenson, Tulsa Yoshikawa, Adam Skalzub, Tony Lefroy, Dirk Yarmush, Rob Williamson, Wasted Youth Crew, Sertraline, therapists, Pika and Jesse Burtner, Desiree Melancon, Perrin James, Maren Hamilton, Matt Lindsay, Alex Olea, Roy Olea, Nayeli Mendoza, Rick McGaw, Nysai Moreno, Riley Roice, your mom, Hipster Jaime, Fernando y Crystal, Gonzalo y Rosa Gutierrez, Margaret & Juniper Knight