|MERU (directors/writers: Jimmy Chin/Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi; cinematographer: Jimmy Chin/Renan Ozturk; editor: Bob Eisenhardt; music: J. Ralph; cast: Conrad Anker, Jimmy Chin, Renan Ozturk, Jon Krakauer, Jenni Lowe-Anker, Amee Hinkley, Grace Chin, Jeremy Jones; Runtime: 90; MPAA Rating: R; producers: Ms. Vasarhelyi, Mr. Chin and Shannon Ethridge; Music Box Films; 2015)|
something cool about daredevils who are
not afraid to defy death."
by Dennis Schwartz
was the Sundance audience
award winner for documentaries. The close-ups
of the climbers, the splendid photography of the
climb, the surprising bad set-backs of the
climbers, the avalanches, and the super-human
effort to scale the 20,700
above sea level mountain and carry up the
mountain over a hundred pounds of needed equipment
without rope or sherpas, makes this a very tense
film. Though it never gets deep into the climbers
reasons for taking on the challenging mountain
(though it points out none are narcissists and
they are all mild-mannered) and the climbers lack
of introspection makes it impossible to give the
film much depth. But there's something cool about
daredevils who are not afraid to defy death.
“Shark’s Fin” on Mount Meru in northern India is the
spot for big wall climbers to tackle who are looking
to make a name for themselves in the mountain
climbing world. The adventure
documentary records how three of the world’s best
Chin, Conrad Anker, and Renan Ozturk—conquer
that “impossible” Himalayan peak that has never been
successfully scaled before.
and co-writers, a wife-and-husband
team, Jimmy Chin (one of the climbers)
and Elizabeth Chai
Vasarhelyi, present an
exciting sports documentary, one of the more intimate
and better ones I recently have seen on this sub-genre
subject. It offers the kind of narrative that makes me
wonder why take such a risk, as watching this on film
might get my juices flowing but not in a thousand
years would I ever be induced into such craziness.
REVIEWED ON 12/6/2015 GRADE: B+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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