Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sweetgrass ...

Back in 2009 I did a series of posts about Montana-themed movies, and mentioned that I was really looking forward to seeing the film Sweetgrass. Well, I finally got to watch it while back, and it immediately became one of my favorite Montana films ever ... so consider this post to be an unabashed Sweetgrass plug.

The film is a documentary, chronicling the last years of a large sheep ranch near Big Timber, and rugged summers spent trailing sheep in the high country of the Beartooths. It's a quiet, slow-paced movie, unsentimental but still tremendously wistful and evocative ... a wonderful portrait of a fading era of ranch life.


  1. I'll have to see this film. I grew up near the Sweetgrass hills, a beacon for direction and place, although this film is apparently not about that area. Still, my dad grew up on the Stillwater River south of Columbus and spent a good portion of his life in the Beartooth-Absaroka. He was a tour-bus driver in Yellowstone as a young man...Big Timber, Paradise Valley, the Yellowstone...evocative words for the places of the heart.

  2. Well, Sweetgrass certainly isn't for everyone ... as I said, it can be slow-moving, and it's a documentary, to boot! But it's a truly wonderful depiction of the area, and of the ranch life that characterized it for so long.

    And as for the Sweetgrass Hills -- I absolutely love it up there. I really need to get back up that way with my camera sometime soon.

  3. As a person who seldom watches TV or even movies, I do like documentaries, especially about places dear to me. I hope Net-flix has it.

    ...We always knew where we were in relation to the Sweetgrass Hills, growing up in Shelby out on that vast and nuanced plain with the surprises of arroyos and creeks and little breaks and valleys woven into the fabric of the prairie. Flat it is not; it just looks that way. I'm planning to get there this summer when we come to Montana. I am so homesick.