This film is a true story about a tragic expedition to Mt. Everest in 1996. The cinematographer (Salvatore Totino) has captured spectacular views of Everest and the Himalayas, as well as very realistic footage of mountain climbing.
Rob Hall (Jason Clarke) owns “Adventure Consulting,” a company that takes a small group of mountain climbers (led by Rob) to the lofty peak of Mt. Everest. The company has an excellent reputation for successful climbs and screens the applicants for the trip carefully to make sure they have the experience and conditioning necessary for this extremely arduous and risky venture.
The administration of the company is handled by his close and capable associate, Helen Wilton (Emily Watson). There are numerous other groups climbing Everest, as well, during a small two-week window when the conditions are favorable, including one led by Scott Fischer (Jake Gyllenhaal).
Unfortunately, some poor decisions – along with really bad luck – causes multiple deaths in Rob’s group and some others. The movie is very sad and made me cry, but I still enjoyed it. The screenplay is only average and sometimes the dialogue is wooden, but the film has a fine ensemble cast (especially Josh Brolin as Beck Weathers) that compensates for the screenplay well. The film is not a “peak experience,” but it’s a solid rental (if you have tissues handy). It will be released on DVD by Netflix on February 17th.