Sports Illustrated 1955 Live Auctioneer Image
Image Credit: Live Auctioneers

Apple Pie in Sun Valley (S.I. Archive)

Category: Documentary/Sports
Film: The Other Side of the Mountain

“You know where you’ll find sympathy in the dictionary, don’t ya’? Between shit and suicide.”

Directed by Larry Peerce, the movie is based on the 1966 novel A Long Way Up by E. G. Valens, written about national slalom ski champion (1955) and a 1956 U.S. Olympic skiing team candidate, Jill Kinmont. Produced by Edward Feldman, the screenplay adaption was written by David Seltzer. Jill is played by Marilyn Hassett and, Beau Bridges plays Olympic skiing team member (1952) and stunt pilot Dick “Mad Dog” Buek. Dabney Coleman plays Coach Dave McCoy and Bill Vint plays Buddy Werner. Belinda Montgomery plays Audra Jo or “A.J.”, Jill’s best friend, Nan Martin plays June Kinmont and William Bryant plays Bill Kinmont. Griffin Dunne has a small part.

The film spans Jill’s slalom races to her national championship, her best friend’s polio contraction, her accident while attempting to win the Alta, UT, Snow Cup, her hospital stay, her slow rehabilitation, her heartbreak from the losses of two dear men and her triumph at becoming a teacher.

The Other Side of the Mountain IMDb & Amazon Image
Photo Credit: IMDb & Amazon

Dick Buek was killed in a plane crash on November 3, 1957, two days shy of his 28th birthday (Club of 27?). Buddy Werner was killed in an avalanche in Switzerland on April 12, 1964.

Released July 25, 1975, the film was panned by critics for being too much of a tear-jerker. That may be true but, she did have a really hard time. The sequel was released February 10, 1978 and was panned even worse. I saw them in reverse order. I was only nine years old when the first movie came out so, I didn’t get to see it until I was an adult. I saw Part II, first, when it was released to television. I enjoyed both films despite the bad reviews. Sometimes, bringing someone’s life story to the big screen is handled poorly. Jill passed away February 9, 2012.

Awards & Nominations

Additional Reading:
An Amazing Interview/Jill Kinmont Boothe (Ezine Articles)
The Mad Dog of Donner Summit (Sierra Sun)
The Death of a True Hero (Wired)

The Complete Movie


  1. This is off the wall…That sneak peek is harsh… I heard of this movie when I was a kid but knew nothing about it. I just looked her up…what a hard life she had…it looks pretty good.

    • Told you it would be a surprise. I’m good for off the wall s***. 😁

      Since I saw Part II, first, I had to go look for Part I. I saw Part II when I was 13, 14…it haunted me. Talk about having guts to live on AND finally find love.

      I have this thing for underdogs or those in a righteous fight.

    • LOL…yes you are!

      I thought maybe she recovered but when I looked her up I saw she didn’t….that is sad but it seems she made a good life for herself.

    • This isn’t a documentary. I just included that word since it was part of Hans’ category. This is a middle 1970s theatrical melodrama. It is just as slow as The Godfather but, less entertaining. These days, it would never get made and would show up on Hallmark or LMN with B-list actors.

    • Hm. I just checked my text document. I grabbed the right link. It shows up, properly, on my post:

      Odd that another link would show up when you posted. I looked all thru my text document and the link to the “pay” movie is nowhere.

      I chalk it up to WP. It has gremlins.

  2. Pingback: Hans 2021 Movie Draft: Round Three-Pick Five-The Other Side Of The Mountain 1975 « Cosmic Observation·

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