Meru review – mountaineering doc goes over the top

This film of three adventurers braving storms and avalanches to conquer a Himalayan peak will leave non-fanatics at base camp

The top of the Himalayan mountain Meru remained untrampled until 2011, when a team hauled themselves unaided up the “shark’s fin”, the mountain’s sheer peak. Led by Conrad Anker, famed for finding George Mallory’s body on Everest, the three men, including this documentary’s co-director Jimmy Chin, are shown inching to the summit past storms and avalanches, fear and doubt. A calamitous accident sends one of their number to intensive care, but five months later he’s back, hauling and heaving again. It’s an astounding feat, not least because they were shooting the film as they went, but there’s something – perhaps the profligate use of “super” as an adjective – that’s likely to appeal to the extreme sports market and leave the rest of us stranded.


Henry Barnes

The GuardianTramp

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