This week’s film of choice for BMAF was the film of the real-life events that occurred on a climbing expedition to the top of Everest in 1996.
The film follows Rob Hall (played by Jason Clarke, recently seen in Terminator: Genisys) and his tour company which helps the adventures fulfil their ambitions to scale the peak of Everest, amongst them are Doug (John Hawkes) and Beck (Josh Brolin) whose stories are those you will most likely attach to, Beck being the money no object, get me to the top character and Doug, struggling with 3 jobs on his second and we learn final attempt to get to the top having failed on his last outing
Amongst the other characters we follow are a rival adventure company to Rob’s led by Scott Fischer (An under used Jake Gyllenhaal) and Rob’s base camp team led by Helen Wilton (Emily Watson)
We are also introduced to Rob’s pregnant partner Jan (played by Keira Knightley) and Beck’s partner Peach (Robin Wright) for reasons that will come to light as the hike to the top of the mountains begins
This is a dramatic film based on true events and not knowing those stories certainly helped with the tension because despite the name cast, I had no idea who would live or die. Death’s certainly do occur as our teams are caught with little warning in a violent storm after making it to the peak of the mountain, low on oxygen and against some of the harshest conditions known, we follow the adventures desperate attempts to get back to base camp alive.
What the film does well is the characters, we actually do care if they live or die, in particular Doug, who having failed previously, we learn that he is divorced and struggling with his 3 jobs, climbing Everest is all he has to live for, he has promised children from a school, he will place their flag at the top, we also learn more of Rob here, where it is established he let Doug join again at a much reduced price from all the others due to his lack of funds despite the 3 jobs, bit we also learn it is Rob who denied Doug reaching the top on the last occasion
Once the snow storm hits, we follow Helen’s base camp team who are completely helpless to get Rob and co down. They can only help Rob by occasionally patching Jan through via satellite phone to offer words of encouragement and you really feel their struggle as various climbers fall through hyperthermia and the cold as they slowly run out of oxygen or when frostbite takes over.
The film I found was enhanced by viewing in3D because as you can imagine, the scales of Everest are given real depth in this format
This is a very good piece of film making but it is not without issues, with so many characters, it is hard to keep track of them all, you are certainly not clear who is who when the snow storm hits.
In respect of the real-life accounts, it does appear some events have been changed, it would appear blame is tried to be put on a South African team for example, and also on Doug who it would appear because of his struggle/determination to get to the top kept the climbers on the mountain longer than they should have been
This, however is a great spectacle to watch and it is best seen on the big screen but what did you think?
Did you find the film dramatic or emotionless? Did you think 3D added to the film or did you see it without and still found it to still be as good, we’d love to hear from you =)
Everest is rated 12a and has a run time of 121 minutes
Why not like us on Facebook for lots of movie fun and the latest news: www.facebook.com/barkingmadaboutfilms