Everest movie poster

The opening text lets you know that prior to 1996, no one had died during a commercial expedition to the world's highest peak. So now you know what's coming. The first part of Baltasar Kormakur's version of the events recounted in John Krakauer's bestseller Into Thin Air serves to introduce the players: in general, there is a direct proportion between how much you learn about someone and how much they are destined to suffer. (It's easier to care about a guy who needlessly risks his life when you know what he's chasing and what he stands to leave behind.) Also, to lay out the various Things That Can Go Bad: failed bodily systems, frayed ropes, depleted oxygen supplies, bad weather, etc. Also, to introduce some interpersonal complications — though none of them matter much in the end. As a Russian guide notes, it's the mountain that always has the last word. The second part covers the frustratingly slow ascent. The third is where the wind picks up and the bad stuff starts. Through it all, the women wait by the phone. With Jason Clarke, John Hawkes, Josh Brolin, Jake Gyllenhaal, Robin Wright, Keira Knightley, Elizabeth Debicki, and Emily Watson. 2015.

Matthew Lickona

This movie is not currently in theaters.

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