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BMZ Review: The Wildest Dream: Conquest of Everest
By Ross Anthony


Following the Footsteps of Mallory and Irving
Written by: Ross Anthony
Source: Ross Anthony's Hollywood Report Card
Date: March 8, 2010


Category: Reviews

The production does draw the viewer in from time to time. And that visceral shot of Leo's solo whimsical free climb pulled at my heart, and slid my butt to the edge of my seat. Oddly, it's the film's most compelling moment precisely because it is visceral. The rest of the documentary is academic, curious, even interesting, but it fails to be visceral. This is the first reason of many that it doesn't fill a large format screen. Poor resolution images comprise most of the picture as well as the second reason this film falls short of the format. Thirdly, occasionally cinematographers employ a more modern "shaky camera" strategy to give the scene a more real feel. On TV this would work. On the big screen, it's visual torture.

Along the same lines, included is a nice animated recreation of Everest and its surrounding areas which almost looks real. On a small screen, it probably rocks. But on the big screen, it ends up looking like poor resolution optical capture -- again, embarrassing on the big screen.

Other problems: Big brass and tympani pound while large detail-lacking images of Everest climb before our eyes. I'm sure it's meant to awe us, but fails. The "personal" letters between Mallory and wife also underwhelm.

That said, I greatly enjoyed the old footage of Mallory both still and rolling. Even speckled with grain, they're endearing, engaging, real. Further, how refreshing to see the home of our modern climber, modest, actually reflects the average American -- and a woman with no make up. I applaud! And that charming quip of real dialogue between mom and son.

Mom: "Would you climb Everest in those clothes?"
Son: "No."
Mom: "What would you wear?"
Son: "I wouldn't climb Everest."

Catch this on TV one lazy Sunday or enjoy it at some climbing museum in the Montana if you're so moved, but see the real EVEREST in IMAX.

The Wildest Dream: Conquest of Everest. Copyright © 2010.
Narrated by Liam Neeson. Featuring the voices of Ralph Fiennes, Natasha Richarson, Hugh Dancy, and Alan Rickman. Directed by Anthony Geffen. Produced by Atlantic and National Geographic.
Grade..........................C+ (1/4)

Copyright © 1998-2010. Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit: For Adult & Teen Novels written by Ross Anthony visit:

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