Fifth about The Seventh

Free Solo

Free Solo: Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin’s documentary chronicles an athletic feat that is as impressive as it is, for those looking from the outside, superfluous (as is generally the case with feats of that nature). It takes a certain sort of personality to climb a rock without any protection, and while Alex Honnold (the subject of the doc) is passionate about what he does, he comes across as aloof and unlikeable. That said, the filmmakers present the journey quite well, and the pièce de résistance of the film, the deed itself is quite thrilling to watch. It helps matters immensely that it is so visually dramatic, with the stunning images of El Capitan and other mountains beautifully captured by the cinematographing team. Editor Bob Eisenhardt’s work informs and thrills, making good use of diagrams to show the route and its risks; it’s also quite interesting that the film is a making-of of itself. Good musical score by composer Marco Beltrami.

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