Sunday, May 3, 2015

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Every Monday the Journey with Jesus posts a new essay based upon the Biblical Lectionary, a film review, a book review, and a poem or prayer. The Eighth Day is published every Wednesday.

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The Journey with Jesus: Film Reviews

Film Reviews by Dan Clendenin

Everest (1998)Everest (1998)

At five and a half miles high (29,028 feet), mighty Mount Everest is the holy grail of climbers. Since Edmund Hillary first summited Everest in 1953, over 150 people have died trying to scale its heights (about a third of them by avalanche). This interesting if short (45 minutes) film documents a successful 1996 IMAX expedition by three climbers—Jamling Tenzin Norgay, whose father accompanied Hillary; Araceli Segarra, the first Spanish woman to ever reach the top; and Ed Viesturs, a professional climber who also happens to use this trip as his honeymoon. As fate would have it, their climb occured at the same time as the disaster documented in Jon Krakauer's Into Thin Air when New Zealander Rob Hall and seven others were caught in a storm and killed. Spectacular scenery takes you to the crevasses and cols, the gale winds, snug tents, base camps, and minus-100 temperatures. But the successful climb that the film documents is overshadowed by our knowledge that the "real story" at that time was about Hall and his ill-fated companions. A powerfully emotional interview with Beck Weathers, a survivor of the Hall expedition who lost both hands and part of his face to frostbite, is a "special feature" of the DVD that makes watching this otherwise interesting film all the more worthwhile. At 35 minutes this special feature is almost as long as the film itself.