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I watched last evening, and having grown up in the Desert SW my comments and experiences are influenced by living on/near SIPI, taking field trips to Acoma and other sites, as well as having had the opportunity to float the Rio Grande, San Juan, the Green from Dutch John to Swinging Bridge, and Gates of Lodore, over the course of the last 40 years.

We have to do better in respecting the rights of the people, environment, and the future of the region. I’m jealous of the folks that got to experience this trip, but not more so than the feeling of remorse that the future looks bleak for all of us. And the only solutions I see are reducing use, no more dams, and returning the land to its original state.
 

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Hi Everybody! I'm thrilled that you all took the opportunity to watch "A River Out of Time". I think it's fair to say that our main goal was to promote dialogue and have conversations about many challenging issues facing the Colorado River Basin. Based on this forum, I think we have had some success. I'll go through and respond to some specific questions throughout the thread but if you have anything you'd like to ask, I'm happy to offer some insights into various aspects of the expedition and subsequent film. Sincerely, Jessica
 

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Initial impressions: I liked it but didn't love it. I think it tried to be too many things. A buddy river video, an expedition video, a river documentary, a science video, a tribal documentary...but it was none of those things on their own and it didn't weave them very well together.
I liked the individual footage. The interviews were generally good, but it had jarring transitions between interview footage and river footage.

I really really really enjoyed the Howard Dennis interview. I think a movie could be shot with all tribal storytellers telling their own stories all the way down the river and it would be incredible. [[Me too! Howard's perspective and thoughtful insights were greatly appreciated.]]

Yet the cameos with the senior white river guides was 'meh'. So..there are lots of senior white river guides and we've heard most of their stories..which are interesting but detracted from this movie. [[As a point of clarification, Noel Richardson, who is interviewed in Lodore, was never a river guide. He's my best boating friend and I asked him to help row a raft for us and he agreed. He's a wonderful story teller and was a solid member of the crew.]]

I didn't understand the interview with the artist. He talked about it like an unfinished "project" but we never saw any finished art. [[Patrick Kikut was the lead artist for the expedition. Prior to launching, Pat and 7 other artists created a wide variety of artwork which was on display at four different museums throughout the basin. After the expedition, Pat created 18 more oil paintings and has contributed artwork to three different publications. If you want to see two of his large paintings in person, you can visit me at my shop in downtown Laramie, WY. They are gorgeous.]]


It was interesting that J.W.Powell was vilified a couple times in the movie. I don't think he was a flawless individual for sure, but I also feel he was vilified for things that he actually tried to do right. He tried to warn the growing American government that there wasn't enough water in the west, yet he also headed up the fledgling USGS and helped draw the map that people used to move west. He was painted in the movie as a foe to the natives, yet he founded the bureau of ethnology and tried to help them tell their story.

There are FAR worse villains who weren't mentioned...like General George Crook, General Nelson Miles, or Kit Carson who actively pursued the Government's genocidal policies or later Floyd Dominy who was the architect of the free-flowing river's destruction. [[Powell's role was the focus as the 150th anniversary of his expedition offered us the opportunity to retrace his route and consider the many challenging issues facing water in the West for the next 150 years. We worked to foster dialogue about current relevant issues facing the basin and its users rather than focus too much on the past.]]



I was confused by the planting of beans scene. What?
And the footage on the two swimmers did little for me. For a river documentary, it just distracted from the main storyline.


Is this a good movie for an uninformed viewer?
Have I read too much, did I expect too much?

I think I'm going to re-watch it. There's a lot to unpack and discuss. [[Thanks for your thoughts and for taking the time to view it. Much appreciated.]]
 

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What is an oar saver?
As long as you've been on here, I have to assume you're trolling me but I'll answer all the same. I've called them oar savers for almost 20 years. You call them what you want. Tethers. Leashes. The item that keeps the oar from floating or sinking away if popped out of oarlock. aka 31:52 in the video

 

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Of course they didn't credit my buddy who delivered their replacement motor, showed/helped them replace it and hauled out their dead one...

[[Jeff Campbell was a key contributor to our success in motoring across Lake Powell and his help was greatly appreciated. We are fallible human beings and certainly didn't mean any disrespect by not including him in the credits. We were thrilled to have Jeff come to a screening of the film at John Wesley Powell River History Museum in Green River, UT. If you are interested in reading more about the expedition and seeing the extensive list of people, businesses and organizations who helped us complete it you can read the attached SCREE (Powell 150) Booklet. Thank you for taking the time to watch the film. Much appreciated. Jessica]]

Meh.
 

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I'm in the background in a few scenes. In hindsight wished I would of done more then just Ladore. But taking months off and being a boatmen for a more liberal crowd kind of scared me. Though the people that were on the Gates section were awesome. Glad they used some stuff from Noel, guy is a great story teller. Glad I got to be part of it and Jess inviting me.
[[It was wonderful to have you along, even if it was only for a short section. Being able to invite and take some of my best rafting buddies on various sections was definitely one of the best parts for me.]]
 

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Get ready for my armchair QB comment - don't run Cataract without an oar saver. I use oar savers on every trip. Call me any name in the book, and I'll still have my loop straps from Tuff River Stuff connected to frame and oars.
[[In addition to the loss of the oar that was in the film, the cataraft that was on the trip lost one when they went through Satan's Gut in Big Drop 3. However, he had taped "floaties" to each oar (the same kind of arm floaties that you might put on little kids) and we found his oar floating in the reeds a few miles later.]]
 

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In regards to the film, I'll take any river content. Was it perfect? No. Has there been a perfect river film that encapsulates all topics that involve rivers? I haven't seen it. And don't you even think about throwing Burt Reynolds and Merrl Streep's names out. Entertaining, possibly. Accurate depiction of rivers, not close.

Also, they didn't mention the introduction of tamarisk, and it's impacts. [[Discussing tamarisk is definitely important. We had to leave out numerous worthy topics as it's a one hour documentary. Cody and Ben captured over 16 Terabytes of video and photos and had the arduous and lengthy task of editing/reducing it to a one hour film that engaged the audience and asked viewers to think critically about some of the challenges facing the Colorado River Basin. I think it's safe to say that we'd be happy to conduct another expedition which examines more closely the flora and fauna of the river corridor. ;)]]

And how did they get thru Gates or Deso/Grays and not have 1 mention of mosquitoes??? [[We floated through Lodore from June 1-4, just prior to the annual big release from Flaming Gorge so there were no mosquitos there. By the time we arrived at Sand Wash to float through Desolation-Gray Canyons, the water had risen significantly and we floated through Deso on about 26,000 cfs thus not many mosquitos out. The water started to drop when we left Green River State Park, UT on June 24 thus we had horrendous mosquitos from there to the confluence with the Colorado. It was unpleasant in camps but not too bad while on the river.]]

All the same, I'll share it on socials because even with imperfections it's still better content than housewives of roaring fork valley. [[Right on! Thank you.]]
 

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As long as you've been on here, I have to assume you're trolling me but I'll answer all the same. I've called them oar savers for almost 20 years. You call them what you want. Tethers. Leashes. The item that keeps the oar from floating or sinking away if popped out of oarlock. aka 31:52 in the video

No, sorry didn't mean to troll. I get it now, i call them tethers.
 

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Watching a film about multiday rafting is about as interesting and exciting as watching one on cross country trucking.

Here's a film my buddy put out several months ago. Its mainly kayaking but y'all might still enjoy.
And watching a movie about boating through a tiny island of wilderness back east is about as interesting and exciting as watching one about morning jogs through Central Park. I kid, I kid! To each their own! You gotta take the adventure you can find, I guess.
 

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And watching a movie about boating through a tiny island of wilderness back east is about as interesting and exciting as watching one about morning jogs through Central Park. I kid, I kid! To each their own! You gotta take the adventure you can find, I guess.
The number of people that have boated some of those creeks and falls is in the 100s, if that. My point was we all know what the Green and Colorado look like. With the funding and size of that film they could have gone somewhere much more unique and actually made a film FOR boaters, not one about them.
 

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The number of people that have boated some of those creeks and falls is in the 100s, if that. My point was we all know what the Green and Colorado look like. With the funding and size of that film they could have gone somewhere much more unique and actually made a film FOR boaters, not one about them.
What would that look like? What would you like to see (which rivers, carnage, instruction, etc.)
Just curious...
 

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What would that look like? What would you like to see (which rivers, carnage, instruction, etc.)
Just curious...
It's a big world and rivers are everywhere... The 1st choice for where (for me) would without doubt be Siberia. That obviously would be rather impossible right now. Mongolia (think Eastern PNW but bigger) or China are great choices as are Pakistan and India. I'm a sucker for thrills for sure, but I always enjoy a good documentary about the people and places. Its not about killer footage and expert eggheads but the journey and the struggle to see the unseen. Maybe because this was basically a turnkey trip (once the filming started) it lost all aspect of adventure... I guess simply put, if the river has a paved ramp and parking lot, I've already lost interest.
 

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I appreciated the spirit of the film, but agree that it was a little all over the place in trying to define its storyline and character. The rigging scenes in the beginning were standard. The videography was slick and I actually really liked the footage of the Uinta Basin leg of the trip - that's a stretch of the river you don't see or hear about much. What an awesome expedition though! I saw this group down on the Grand Canyon and as seasoned guides, we were all pretty envious of them doing the entirety of Powell's run. I also agree that the transitions were a bit harsh and toward the end I felt like the narrative was fizzling out in an effort to get the film over with. Overall, it was worth a watch and I think that a lot of Buzzards, myself included, will serve up some realistically harsh criticism as we are all boaters that live by the water and therefore will be the hardest crowd to happily consume this film. Not sure I could do much better. My wife fell asleep while watching it.

I'll continue watching beater vids in the meantime, but thanks for sharing. Good way to spend a lazy cold night at home.
 

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The number of people that have boated some of those creeks and falls is in the 100s, if that. My point was we all know what the Green and Colorado look like. With the funding and size of that film they could have gone somewhere much more unique and actually made a film FOR boaters, not one about them.
I know it's not unheard of, but how about the fact that they got Gates, Deso, Cataract, and Grand permits to all line up for one epic trip? Perhaps they got special permits, but if not.... that's a feat in and of itself. (and yes, I know Cat permits are easy) Perhaps the editing or storyline aren't at big budget expectations, but like Jessica said - they had 7 TB of videos to dig thru and it was only 2 dudes. The fact that they got to float and video the vast majority of one of the US's major drainages, I don't care if it was the clunkiest film I would still watch it and appreciate it. If all we do is bash people's work and say this is stupid they should've done a different project, do you think that will lead to anyone else wanting to do any projects like this? To critique what might've been better I can see as valid on a forum that is full of critics, but to say the project should've been scrapped and do something else... I don't agree. They took on a project. Sponsors agreed to that project. I'll leave it at that.

And in this era of the most ignorant tiktok blips getting millions of views - I'll watch this video more than once, click like, share it, and say kudos to the river rats that were able to make it happen.
 

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Yeah it's amazing that Uncle Sam allowed them to boat the public's rivers... Let's hope the video gets a billion views and everyone in America gets a ready to run rig from DRE. There's enough permits to go around I'm sure 🙄
 

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I liked it. I really enjoyed and appreciated the material that Ben K and others have posted over the last couple of years, including during the filming. I went in with no expectations and wasn't disappointed. I'm assuming they ran it on mostly science/research permits (J Flo, can you share?). I appreciate the time these folks put into this, they don't owe us anything.

I agree that the beans scene was not needed.

Also, thanks to NRS for putting this out there to the larger public audience. They obviously weren't a major sponsor and I appreciated that it wasn't an NRS fashion show. Cool of them.
 

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Jessica, first of all, THANK YOU for taking the time to respond in person. As both @Blade&Shaft and @yesimapirate both noted, we're probably a harsh group of critics on this forum, especially also being river lovers...and also the fact that it's winter and we wish we were out boating and instead are arguing with each other on the internet to pass the time.

Hi Everybody! I'm thrilled that you all took the opportunity to watch "A River Out of Time". I think it's fair to say that our main goal was to promote dialogue and have conversations about many challenging issues facing the Colorado River Basin. Based on this forum, I think we have had some success. I'll go through and respond to some specific questions throughout the thread but if you have anything you'd like to ask, I'm happy to offer some insights into various aspects of the expedition and subsequent film. Sincerely, Jessica
I really really really enjoyed the Howard Dennis interview. I think a movie could be shot with all tribal storytellers telling their own stories all the way down the river and it would be incredible. [[Me too! Howard's perspective and thoughtful insights were greatly appreciated.]]


If you could produce some shorter followup features of him or other indigenous trip participants, that would be awesome. Their point of view and voices haven't been heard as much as others..

I didn't understand the interview with the artist. He talked about it like an unfinished "project" but we never saw any finished art. [[Patrick Kikut was the lead artist for the expedition. Prior to launching, Pat and 7 other artists created a wide variety of artwork which was on display at four different museums throughout the basin. After the expedition, Pat created 18 more oil paintings and has contributed artwork to three different publications. If you want to see two of his large paintings in person, you can visit me at my shop in downtown Laramie, WY. They are gorgeous.]]


Can you link some of those? I'm a 13 hour drive away from Wyoming. It's cool that they were inspired, but I'd love to see some of the art this trip inspired.
That might also be worth a followup featurette.

Powell's role was the focus as the 150th anniversary of his expedition offered us the opportunity to retrace his route and consider the many challenging issues facing water in the West for the next 150 years. We worked to foster dialogue about current relevant issues facing the basin and its users rather than focus too much on the past.
THANK YOU again.
The Colorado and related water issues are already a topic of frequent conversation here. I think you did kickstart some additional worthy dialogue.
Sincerely,
Shawn
 
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