Friday, April 30, 2010

Touching the Void

I am a firm believer in the medium of film, but the docudrama Touching the Void may strengthen the argument that some tales are too great for the large screen to hold. It tells the true story of two young avid mountain climbers who, in 1985, attempt to scale the west face of the Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes, a feet that had never been done before (or since). Their ascent goes swimmingly, but on their descent one of the men falls and breaks his leg. He narrates how he survived this apparent death sentence. While watching this, though my mind was riveted pondering these scenarios, I felt the visuals did not do the stroy justice. Also, having the men narrate and knowing all along of their survival of the ordeal plays counter to the suspense. Though their story is enthralling enough, the way it is filmed does not live up to its material.