Thursday, 24 March 2011

Touching the Void

The basics
Touching the Voiding is a bestselling book which came out in 1988 and was made in to a film in 2003. This film is a reconstructive documentary about mountain climbing, decision making, life and Death, giving it your all and doing it in a very British way.  
What is this film about?
This is a true story about two British mounting climbers, Joe Simpson and Simon Yates who try to clime the west face of Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes, a mountain that nobody has been able to finish. The film starts with a fourth wall breaking interview where we get to meet the real Joe and Simon and they describe their reasons for why they do what they do and that is 'cause it's fun.’ Fair enough.  As the film goes on we get to see the actors start on this epic challenge as the real people give us a guided narration of what is going on through the interview.

The journey up the mountain is pretty uneventful but it over quickly and at this time in the film you are still just enjoying the awesome cinematography  and mise en scene to really care about how they did something well . When they make it to the top and start their decline this is when the film really kicks in.  As they start to make their way down the mountain, they face problem after problem. An eerie feeling begins to take over as these problems seem to be foreshadowing something. You feel as though at any moment, something is going to go horribly wrong and it does. One of the climbers (Joe Simpson) breaks his leg and no one can blame you if in this scene you get a bit squeamish, as this is a very cringe worthy moment. After this Simon has the plan to get him down by making him slide down the side of the mountain on a rope, what can possibly go wrong?         
My views on it
From the beginning you can instantly see how well this film is made. The cinematography is beautiful as we are given the visual delights of close up shots of the equipment which pays so much attention to detail, also epic long shots of the fantastic scenery and everything in between.

The story in this film makes you constantly question, is this really a true story? As the story goes from bad to worse, and to even worse still. It seems hard to believe that this could happen, but this is part of the fun.  You know a story is good when right at the beginning of the film you see an interview of the two climbers 20 years on from the event which the film keeps cutting back to every now and then, but there is still half of you that thinks that they are going to die.  This film is intense, dramatic, unbelievable, funny and griping with every second and the best part is it’s all true.           
Favourite Quote
‘I was thinking, "Bloody hell, I'm gonna die to Boney M".’
Rating – 4/5


Anonymous said...

your mum is soo hot


Anonymous said...

no she is not

garethb said...

nice review kev. thorough.:)

Anonymous said...

This was an awesome documentary type film, I agree with Kevin, you're in suspense the entire time, even during moments of dark comedy like 'I'm gonna die to Boney M'. Great review Kev, hopefully will get more people watching it...which they should...cause its awesome!