Panorama | Special Presentations
Jennifer Peedom takes us to exhilarating heights as she explores mountain climbing in this breathtaking, immersive documentary. You may just find yourself gripping the seat arms tightly as you view a climber hanging off a sheer rock face sans ropes; the line between awe and fear is often blurry and never more so than at these elevations. Along for the thrill ride here are Richard Tognetti and his Australian Chamber Orchestra, who give us a succession of rousing pieces, both repertory and original, to carry us through the journey. The music and the images work in beautiful synchronicity, and you most certainly need the theatre experience to feel their full effects.
Peedom’s movie, wonderfully narrated by Willem Dafoe, takes the time to provide some more contemplative moments, and these are equally beautiful. The director also takes us through the history of recreational mountain climbing, with fascinating archival footage illustrating just how much the sport has changed in the years since Sir Edmund Hilary and Tenzing Norgay. Mountaineers aren’t the only ones looking to cheat death; we get footage of heliskiers, tightrope walkers and other thrill-seekers as well. The common denominators are altitude and adrenaline; with this movie, you get both without risking your neck.
"[A] 70-minute rush of adrenaline; a safari into the sublime; a vertiginous voyage to the top of the world."—Janine Israel, Guardian