Watch: Trailer for Sundance 2013 Climbing Documentary 'The Summit'

November 29, 2012
Source: Twitch

The Summit

Now that part of the line-up for the 2013 Sundance Film Festival has been announced (we'll be heading there in January!), some of the buzz for these films is already starting to build. In fact, we already have a trailer for one of the selections in the form of the documentary The Summit. Twenty-four climbers converged at the last stop before climbing the summit of the most dangerous mountain on Earth. Forty-eight hours later, 11 had been killed or simply vanished. However, if one of the climbers, Ger McDonnell, had stuck to the climbers' code, he might still be alive. This looks like a blend of real archive footage with some dramatization also thrown in, much like The Imposter last year. Watch the trailer below!

Here's the first trailer for Nick Ryan's Sundance selected documentary The Summit via Twitch:

On August 2008, twenty-four climbers from several international expeditions converged on High Camp of K2, the last stop before the summit of the most dangerous mountain on earth. Forty-eight hours later, eleven had been killed or had vanished, making it the worst K2 climbing disaster in history.

At the heart of The Summit lies a mystery about one extraordinary man, Ger McDonnell. By all accounts, he was faced with a heart-breaking dilemma-- at the very limit of his mortal resources, he encountered a disastrous scene and a moral dilemma: three climbers tangled up in ropes and running out of time. In the death zone, above 8,000 metres, the body is literally dying with each passing second. Morality is skewed 180 degrees from the rest of life. When a climber falls or wanders off the trail, the unwritten code of the mountain is to leave them for dead. Had Ger McDonnell stuck to the climbers' code, he might still be alive. Stay tuned for our coverage of this film and many more at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival in January!

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  • dom
    You should check out nicks short films - they are great.
  • beevis
    this doc should be very interesting! i've read 2 books on this disaster and i'm looking forward to seeing this. anyone see "touching the void"? that was a great mt. climbing doc too.
    • Touching the Void is great, the bit at the end with that tune is super bizarre, imagine hearing that before you were about to die? Boney M!
      • beevis
        agreed - the climbing being done in the snowstorm was amazing too - i can't imagine the mindset it takes to go up a mountain like that!
  • Nick Ryan is a master
  • HyperJ
    Everything about this looks like recreated/dramatized footage. There is nothing documentary about it - just trying to look like a documentary.
    • Although it clearly does have many "re-created" moments that simply couldn't have filmed those two days, I saw a ton of footage from Fredrick Strang's "A Cry From The Top Of The World' and other pooled footage from the multiple expeditions there that year. Either way , it'll be great , as this is the ultimate tale of triumph & tragedy atop K2.
  • Bad cuts. Climbing is so weird. I get it, that it's a penis thing. But yeah.
    • beevis
      i've read many books on climbing and heard many views on it- but never.....not even once.....have i read the opinion that "it's a penis thing" what a bizarre notion.
      • You know, like selfish man thing Beevis, all about the wang, survival of the fittest type stuff. "Aw so your dying? Cry to your wife you whiney baby and die already, no time for losers cause we are the champions!" It's fair enough, but ultimately pointless.
        • beevis
          it's the phrase that threw me - never heard that. but your explanation is pretty close, from what i've read. whether it's a man or woman climbing - whether they are single or have a wife/husband and 10 kids at home....when they're on the mountain, they take big chances to try for the summit and don't consider anyone else.
          • I can understand it from an adventure point of view, the thrill of taking a risk doing something most people consider insane. But really going against nature in that way is eventually going to claim you, nature is the more powerful beast. I don't know if you've watched the documentary 'Let It Ride' about Craig Kelly. even though he died I actually found it pretty uplifting, here's the trailer:
          • beevis
            that looks very interesting - good scenery too. i'll look for it.
    • beevis
      i've read many books on climbing and i've never heard anyone describe it as "it's a p**** thing". what a bizarre notion.
    • I wonder if Marco Confortola thinks it's a "penis thing" , since his was frozen, frostbitten, and eventually amputated after his ordeal those two days in August 2008.
      • He didn't have to climb the mountain. I'm sure when he's on his own late at night he weeps for his missing phallus. He might not have a wang, but at least he's alive!




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