Smoky Mountain Film Festival

2021 Official Film Selections!

Check out the great films here soon, showing at the 2021 Smoky Mountain Film Festival!

The Hike

The Hike is based on true hiking stories from the southern parts of the Appalachian Trail and the production company's possible real life run in with a Native American legend.

A couple from East Tennessee goes on a three day hike in the Great Smoky Mountains. The fun starts to dissipate when they start finding evidence of possible criminal activity scattered throughout the trails, and the deeper they plunge into the wilderness, the more they feel like they are being watched.

Things take a turn for the worse when the couple runs into a trio of intimidating strangers. Their intentions are unclear, and the couple tries everything to escape the woods before violence ensues with their new adversaries.


Crux follows Harvey, a recovering addict who uses rock climbing to work through his ongoing struggle with mental health.

Life can be beautiful. Life can be messy. Add in the struggles of addiction and life can often become overwhelming.

As trauma, depression, heartbreak and declining mental health were woven into Harvey Wright’s internal fabric, so was rock climbing. Climbing gave him purpose and helped him to connect with nature, with others and with himself. Passion and healing followed but his mental health was to be massively tested by the global pandemic, with self-isolation forcing Harvey away from the climbing lifestyle.

Crux tells the story of Harvey’s recovery as he learns to love himself amidst the mountains of his life.

Open Wounds

Erica (Emily Conley) is saddened by the lack of faith she finds in the world. Determined to make a change, she tries to convince her school principal, Principal Marks (Karla Dansereau) that prayer and bible study should be allowed back in school. Facing obstacles from her friends and Principal Marks, Erica pursues the matter and gets herself into a mess. With the help of the new performing arts teacher Miss Rainey (Trinity Dobbs) and the power of prayer, Erica finds a way to let Christ shine through her. In the end, sin is defeated and the open wounds in each person begins to heal.

One Long Day

Dani’s morning seems to be going pretty well, until she’s told by her best friend that her life is pathetic. Now all Dani wants to do is go home and hide from the world. However, Dani’s roommate blames Dani for her dog running away. Now she has one day to find Scout, or lose her apartment for good. Dani spends the day hiking through her outdated hometown encountering new and familiar faces forcing Dani to re-evaluate her life by confronting her dreaded past. Maybe, if Dani can just make it through the day, she’ll find a little more than she thinks she’s been scouting for.

The Yurt

Jack embarks on a journey into the occult world of Tantra. After breaking up with his fiance', Jack leaves the city life seeking a connection with nature to heal his heart. Jack finds something different and bizarre when he meets tantric guru Kali, a spiritual leader offering him a new path. Through unique spiritual practices, she uncovers his past trauma and helps him discover his true self. Where does our need to belong end?

Counting Bullets

One of 12 westerns in 12 months, Counting Bullets tells the story of a small group of cavalry soldiers who are pinned down in a canyon by the enemy. Over the course of a few days, they are forced to face their differences and rely on each of their instincts to survive.


A female martial arts instructor tries to track down a trio of serial rapists who may of may not exist.

Electric Jesus

It's the summer of 1986. Erik (Andrew Eakle) is the shy, quiet type—but far more passionate than most teenagers when it comes to God and rock-n-roll. His dream comes true when he is asked to run sound for his favorite band, 316—a Christian hair metal band made up of older kids from his church.

After a blistering performance at a church camp talent show, 316 is introduced to a flashy Christian Rock promoter with a plan. Glad-handing, Lord-loving Skip Wick (Brian Baumgartner) wants to take the band on the road—promising the boys a jam-packed summer of paid Christian rock gigs and a shot at making a real record in Nashville. But most importantly, Skip’s offer represents the ultimate chance to “make Jesus famous.”

Complications arise when a woebegone pastor’s (Judd Nelson) daughter, 16 year-old Sarah (Shannon Hutchinson), stows herself away in the band's RV after a church performance in Alabama. Once discovered, Skip must keep recalcitrant Sarah along for the next couple of weeks on the road—which turns out to be plenty of time for the talented girl to emerge as the band’s muse, head-turning opening act, and Erik’s first love.

The Barn

A local man is missing and the town Sheriff is looking for clues?

The Icing

An erotic thriller which centers on Fin Scott (Tony Marino), an ex-cop, whose only goal is to assassinate a state senator and collect $100,000 dollars. Marilyn Bellows, the senator's wife, played by Kelly LaMont (Million Dollar Quartet) orders the hit in hopes to be with Fin. Marilyn will go to any extremes - lust, betrayal, and even murder to get what she wants. Co-stars Katie Cleary (America's Top Model, Tosh.O) and Jim McMahon (NFL Super Bowl Champion)

Quiet, Pretty Things

A small town detective is following a string of puzzling local murders when a mistake inadvertently directs the killer's focus to him.

The Mystery Mountain Project

In 1926, a young couple set off into the British Columbia wilderness in search of an undiscovered mountain. A century later a group of would-be adventurers tries to retrace their steps. They soon find they’ve bitten off more than they can chew and it will take everything they’ve got to avoid disaster.

Slow Burn

After a traumatic miscarriage, a woman suffering from PTSD resists her husband's attempts to get her to use medical marijuana to curb her symptoms.

Dark Puppet

Larry, a once rather meek individual, now haunted by murder, videotapes himself recounting what drove him to kill his abusive wife.

For My Son

Imogen, a young drug-addicted mother fighting with her addiction, videotapes herself reaching out to her son, the one light in her life.


Illegal is a feature-length documentary about the miraculous journey of Salvadoran immigrant Laz Ayala’s life or death path to U.S. citizenship, the challenges of present-day immigration, and his mission to humanize immigrants and reform immigration for the benefit of all.

The film begins as Laz journeys back to his childhood home in El Salvador. He recounts his arduous path north on the Pan American Highway with his father and brother where at any moment they could have been discovered and turned back… or killed. Laz’s life is a story of struggle, determination, and hope for a brighter future for immigrants, the industries that rely upon them, and our entire country.

Leap Year

People are drawn to spey fishing because it’s honest, inherently challenging and deeply intertwined with tradition. The history and practice of spey fishing has been protected and preserved through generous teachers and storied institutions: the remote fishing lodges that are home to guides and passionate anglers. Guests return to these meeting grounds year after year to access the fisheries where they can carry on this craft, and without them, the tradition becomes fractured and begins to fade away.

With so much change in the world around us, we all need something to count on. The outdoors are a place most of us turn for peace and rejuvenation. Outdoor pursuits dripping with tradition—like spey fishing—have become even more sacred and worthy of protection.

Lodges are struggling to support their angling communities and the craft that ties them together. In the remote parts of the world where lodges are located, lockdowns and travel bans cut off an integral connection point to spey fishing. But all is not lost. The power of these traditions and the strength of the angling community can carry them through the most uncertain of times...this year, it just might look a little different.

Born From Junk

In the mid-1970s, mountain biking didn’t exist, at least not by name.

For the Grubstake Gang, a crew of mountain-town outlaws living in Crested Butte, Colorado, building and riding “klunkers” was done out of necessity at first. It was a better way to navigate town’s dirt roads - even main street was pocked with potholes that snapped and swallowed cars on the regular.

Back then, there was more time to kill than jobs to be had,and soon the Grubstake Gang started shuttling their custom 60-pound “klunkers” up into the mountains and riding them down like a bat out of hell.

There was no ambition, no goals other than to go fast and have fun. And to maybe be the first one back to the bar.

“Born From Junk” is the story of these unlikely pioneers, and how their simple pursuit of good times in the mountains blossomed into a global phenomenon.

Flight Fright

An airline passenger with a fear of flying starts to see strange things after taking some nerve medicine. A comedy spoof of the famous Twilight Zone episode "Nightmare At 20,000 Feet".

Gramma & Ginga: The Movie

The story of beloved sisters Gramma and Ginga who, at ages 104 and 99, accidentally became the world's oldest internet superstars.


An aging hit man teaches his young protege about family and loyalty, but faces a fateful decision when he is betrayed.

Writer's Block

Every filmmaker has heard the phrase, "Write what you know," but what happens when it's taken too far? A filmmaker suffering from writer’s block on his murder mystery feature film takes the advice
“write what you know” too literally.

Bad Candy

Bad Candy follows local Halloween stories of both myth and lessons learned in the community of New Salem. With its annual Psychotronic FM Halloween show, re-enactment radio DJs Chilly Billy and Paul weave the tales of the supernatural of years gone by. In this small town it’s a grimy ending for most, but will a few good souls survive?


A misfit illegal immigrant working two jobs is pushed into a corner by the deteriorating health of his mother back in India. This is a story about the emotional struggle of a son to keep his mother alive from a distant country and how he stands up to the adversities of a marginal life to find true happiness.

Don't Make it Awkward

Like all women, Kate Manopolous just wants to get through her yearly gynecology appointment and out the door, but the new doctor and staff‘s unorthodox approach to treating their patients makes Kate’s entire experience awkward, to say the least.

The New Abolitionists

Filmmaker Christina Zorich follows four NGOs throughout Southeast Asia as they fight to affect change and end human sex trafficking.

Magic Camera

A young girl struggles to come to terms with her Grandmother’s death. Through the use of her imagination and an old camera she seeks to hold on to precious memories and hopes to bridge the emotional gap that exists between her and her mother.

Dairy Land

Since 1949, Dairy Land has been serving burgers and milkshakes to the residents of Walterboro, South Carolina. From Friday night lights to love at first sight, everyone has memories at Dairy Land. Late one October night, the restaurant's owners, Thurston and Camie, received a phone call that their beloved Dairy Land was on fire. An important landmark to Walterboro, Dairy Land must rise from the ashes to serve its loyal customers.

Gretel & Hansel: A New Musical

Gretel + Hansel is a story about Gretel, who wants more than anything to find her mom. But when her witch stepmother Desiree discovers Gretel has stolen her spellbook, Gretel must join her skeptical brother Hansel on a quest to the Millhouse to uncover the mysterious truth about their family.


1972. Vietnam war protests and racial tension is sizzling in the late summer heat of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Billy Mitchell (Devon Bostick, Diary of a Wimpy Kid), a recent college graduate, spends the summer working on the lush grounds of an old world mental institution run by his psychiatrist father (Tate Donovan, Rocketman). Billy falls in love with Virginia (Natalia Dyer, Velvet Buzzsaw, Stranger Things), a patient who is possibly crazy, or perhaps she is the only sane person Billy has in his world. Billy’s best friend Nigel (Marchánt Davis) becomes involved with a radical civil rights activist (YG) against Tuscaloosa’s power elite, which includes Billy’s father. Billy is torn between Nigel, his father and his cronies, and Virginia who is planning her escape with or without Billy.

A Flash of Green

After being wounded by the first explosions at Pearl Harbor, Charles McCandless fought in the most critical battles against Imperial Japan in World War II. Midway, Guadalcanal, Peleliu, and Iwo Jima, to name a few. When he got home, like many veterans, he never talked about it. When Sandra McCandless Simons first read her father's memoir, its revelations inspired her to publish his book so that others could experience his unique perspective on the war in the Pacific.

Using newly-discovered archive footage along with unique images from McCandless family scrapbooks, this film brings the vivid storytelling of Charles' memoir to the screen, along with fresh insight and humanity to one of the most consequential military struggles in history.

The Drive: Famagogo

Peter Holcombe and his family of Nomadic adventure travelers have discovered the meaning of life while on the road in their Winnebago RV; embodying what it truly means to live freely. Once they let go of the external pressures to "get ahead", they found themselves with and abundance of time and freedom to pursue the projects and adventures and ultimately allowed the Holcombes to sculpt a lifestyle beyond their wildest dreams.


Another devil decapitated

Those Who Move Mountains

In a near-futuristic society that has left humans reliant on urban infrastructure, a falsely convicted woman is sentenced to a lifetime in the wilderness.

Charlie Autumn

Bored small-town investigative journalist has to convince her editor to let her pursue the story of a lifetime, despite its dangers.


A jaded alcoholic has his world view challenged by an unexpected act.

Jon Valentine

8-year-old Shay spends the day at her Grandparents house with her best-friend JV, enjoying their time together despite realities that seek to stop their fun.

All the Young Dudes

Georgia, USA, 1973. Glam rocker Billy rebels against his conservative high school, inspiring admiration from an unlikely ally with a desire to walk on the wild side….

Stray Dogs

After a man's beloved dog passes, he embarks on a backpacking trip with his brother to bury his dog where he found him ten years earlier. Along the way, they encounter a stranger who turns out to be a killer on the run. The brothers must unite in order to survive and finish their mission to bury the dog.

Coming Home

Technical Sergeant Jack Ward, and Senior Airman Danny Spiro wait out a delay at the airport on their last leg home from a long deployment overseas. While Sergeant Ward has been through all this before, Airman Spiro is dealing with the reality of returning home for the first time to a baby girl who doesn’t know him and a wife who may no longer need him.


A group of heathens chases down their sacrifice before the school bell rings.

Milk for Violence

Aaron Trow, greatest outlaw this side of the Mississippi, has just escaped from jail and is on the lam. Meanwhile, in the nearby frontier town of Plymouth Flats, Ana the preacher’s wife is left home alone by her husband Caleb. Out of seemingly nowhere, Aaron breaks into Ana's cottage and proceeds to terrorize her into feeding him dinner. When Ana confronts his errant behavior, Aaron retaliates the only way he knows how; with violence, before disappearing into the night. After trying unsuccessfully to enlist the help of local law enforcement and her cowardly husband, Ana decides to take matters into her own hands. Will justice be served? Will Ana be able to stop Aaron before he strikes again? And what’s up with the three dysfunctional bounty hunters who just showed up in Plymouth Flats?

American Road

American Road explores the extraordinary historical, artistic, and musical resonances of the road in US culture, from the frontier to Kerouac and his contemporary heirs.

Pine Mountain Overnight

A naïve teen discovers just how hairy growing up can be when she embarks on an overnight class camping field trip, braving big rumors, big boobs, and even Bigfoot.

Chasing Shadows

Three Marine Corps vets hike the West Highland Way in Scotland.

The Bootstrap Paradox

Two guys on a camping trip stumbles across a UFO landing. What comes out is something neither one expected.

Through The Breaks

Jason Cajune lives in Livingston, MT where he designs and builds wooden drift boats alongside his family. Last summer, Jason packed up one of his custom boats and led his family on a float trip down the Missouri River, through the American Prairie Reserve. Their trip serves as a journey through family traditions, a protected landscape and layers of history over time.

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