Meru (film)

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Meru
Meru (film).png
Theatrical release poster
Directed by
Produced by
  • Jimmy Chin
  • Shannon Ethridge
  • Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi
Screenplay by
  • Jimmy Chin
  • Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi
Music by J. Ralph
Cinematography
  • Jimmy Chin
  • Renan Ozturk
Edited by Bob Eisenhardt
Production
company
Little Monster Films
Distributed by Music Box Films
Release date
Running time
87 minutes
Language English

Meru is a 2015 documentary film chronicling the first ascent of the "Shark's Fin" route on Meru Peak in the Indian Himalayas. It was co-directed by married couple Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and won the U.S. Audience Documentary Award at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival.[1]

Premise[edit]

After attempting but failing to summit Meru in 2008, Conrad Anker, Jimmy Chin, and Renan Ozturk return to the mountain in order to conquer its peak – a 4,000 foot wall known as the "Shark's Fin". As they climb, the men also document their ascent. "You know, I'm always a climber first," said Chin on balancing climbing with filmmaking. "I'm always thinking about the safety of myself and the team. And I make that evaluation before I take the camera out."[2] The film is a mixture of footage that chronicles both attempts (the failed 2008 and the successful 2011) while crafting a narrative about the climbers' attempts to face their demons. After suffering a horrific accident while filming on location with Chin, Ozturk has a mere five months to recover before their second attempt, battling near-fatal injuries. Four days after Ozturk's accident, Chin returns to the filming location to finish but is caught in a catastrophic avalanche that he miraculously survives with barely a scratch. Anker wrestles with bringing his mentor's dream to fruition and the loss of both him and his climbing partner many years ago.

Reception[edit]

On review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, Meru has an approval rating of 90% based on 73 reviews, with a rating average score of 7.4 out of 10. The site's consensus reads, "Gripping visually as well as narratively, Meru is the rare documentary that proves thought-provoking while offering thrilling wide-screen vistas."[3] On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating, the film has a score of 77 out of 100 based on reviews from 15 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[4]

On December 1st, the film was selected as one of 15 shortlisted for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.[5]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "A Filmmaker's Epic Journey to the Peak of Meru". National Geographic. February 25, 2015. Retrieved August 13, 2015. 
  2. ^ "For 3 Climbers, Summiting Meru Was An 'Irresistible' Challenge". NPR. September 4, 2015. Archived from the original on September 5, 2015. Retrieved September 8, 2015. 
  3. ^ "Meru Reviews". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved September 10, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Meru Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved September 10, 2015. 
  5. ^ "15 DOCUMENTARY FEATURES ADVANCE IN 2015 OSCAR® RACE". December 1, 2015. Retrieved December 16, 2015. 

External links[edit]