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THE SUMMIT (2012)

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THE SUMMIT (2012)

Thursday, 13 March 2014 20:28

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THE BUZZ

     Among serious (read: crazy) mountain climbers, Everest is easy mode. The locals call it “the mountain that is slightly taller than the other mountains.” It’s tough, but the base-to-summit climb is way easier to take in stages than most of the “Eight Thousanders (mountaineer lingo for the 14 peaks that reach 8,000 meters above sea level), and all of the camps along the way are better equipped and better established. And even though more people have died climbing Everest than any other mountain, it is not the most dangerous. However, the second tallest peak in the world, K2, has killed one person for every four who has made it to the summit. And in 2008, it killed eleven people in one day. This awesome documentary chronicles the incident how it went down as best as the survivors could determine after the whole ordeal was over with a mixture of original footage, high-budget re-enactments, and interviews with the survivors. It makes for a hauntingly gripping documentary, and damn good viewing.

 

THE LIFE OF THE PARTY

     This is a very well-made film. Honestly at times it’s tough to tell the difference between the filming that was shot at the time and the re-enactments, making for a truly claustrophobic, daunting film. There is real humanity in the retellings, and the whole thing is arranged deftly. Additionally, you don’t need to know a thing about climbing insanely tall mountains to be engrossed here. They explain all about how humans slowly wither and literally go insane above 8,000 meters (aptly, but uncreatively named “The Death Zone”), and this movie really makes you start feeling as taxed as the hapless adventurers. Even though you know how the movie ends from the very beginning, the film feels more like The Thing than Vertical Limit. Watching a crew of damned men and women adds real gravity (pardon the pun) to what could otherwise feel like a dry, clinical experience. You’ll feel each death. Man, this really is the life of the party.

 

POTENTIAL HANGOVERS

     This isn’t a happy film. There isn’t a good ending. You can read all about the mechanics of how boned these guys were from the start on Wikipedia (spoiler alert: very, very). So I don’t really recommend putting this on at a raving party, because you’ll miss out on the drama of a pretty technical hobby that most of us don’t have much exposure to. It doesn’t work very well as a movie for large parties, and even though it’s a really gripping documentary, the stark, blanched landscape does pretty much to opposite of providing colorful humanity. It’s dreary in the best way. But not good for your occasion if you aren’t looking for that. Beautiful, sweeping vistas are not here.

 

THE ATMOSPHERE: Guy’s Night, Deep Thoughts, Solo Experience

     If you’re in the mood for a movie about the strongest, most ambitious men and women possible trying to conquer one of the world’s toughest challenges (and reaping horrible results from said endeavor), this is the documentary for you. The way it’s filmed uniquely makes the viewer feel just as trapped, isolated, and hopeless as the doomed multinational climbing team. This makes for good, hardassed survival viewing if your group is in a raring-to-go mood. But you may want to follow up with something a bit more lighthearted. Alternatively, if you are in a desperation mood, watch it with a quiet, focused group, or by yourself for extra points. It really is a fantastic representation of a horrible tragedy, and it needs more attention. So check it out!

 

DRINK:

Once per talking head interview

Twice each time they say “bottleneck”

Thrice each time they say “serac”

(ONE BY ONE THEY FALL MODE) Take a shot for each on-screen death

Read 765 times Last modified on Thursday, 13 March 2014 20:37

About Us

Tanked Matinee is the place to go for good drinking movies. What do we mean by that? Simply speaking, we evaluate and recommend entertainment media based on how much fun it is to watch with friends on the sofa and a cold beer in hand.

Everyone knows "The Godfather" is a great movie, but is it as great to drink with as "Roadhouse?" We can appreciate "Citizen Kane" as a masterpiece of cinema, but is it as good a centerpiece for your party as "Santa Clause Conquers the Martians?"

Tanked Matinee appreciates film as art, but when you're kicking back on Friday night with a tall Rum & Coke, you're not looking for art, man, you want to be entertained. We're here to recommend the best movies for your night in, whether it's a big party, small get-together, or just a quiet night alone with a bottle of wine or three.

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