Sunday, October 15, 2006

Touching the Void

Touching the Void
Directed by: Kevin Macdonald, UK, 2003
Documentary, 106 min
Distributed by: Film Four DVD

Two friends, Joe Simpson & Simon Yates, decide to climb Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes old school style. One rope each, all the way to the top. Upon reaching the top and planning their descent, disaster strikes as Joe falls and breaks his leg. Now Simon has to decide, does he leave Joe and continue the descent himself, or should he try to get his friend down and risk both their lives?

Amazing documentary by the director of One Day in September, Kevin Macdonald. This one as said about two guys who climb Siula Grande and then one of them breaks his leg on the way down. This is just the beginning of their problems. What is so amazing about the movie is that Macdonald manages to build up such suspenseful atmosphere, that you are sat on the edge of your seat hoping that the guys manage to find a way out of the dreadful series of events that happen to them, at the same time as they are talking about it! You know that they survive; we know that they are alive, but still we are so afraid of what is going to happen to the guys in the re-enactments. Primarily told through interviews with Simon, Joe and Richard, [who stayed at base camp], interwoven with atmospheric music, mighty footage of mountains and stuff, and dynamic re-enactments with actors this is definitely a must see piece of documentary film making, it's 106minutes of suspense that will keep you gasping as things go from worse to horrendous. I actually feel that this documentary is better, even though the topic may not be as inflamed, than MacDonald's previous academy award winning One Day in September.

Widescreen 16:9 Anamorphic. English subtitles for the hearing impaired

English - Dolby Digital (5.1)

Extras: On the UK DVD version the half-hour movie Touching the Void: Return to Siula Grande is featured as an extra. What happened next and the original trailer.

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