Beginner’s Guide to Adventure Films

Beginner’s Guide to Adventure Films

Adventure Films to Watch

I love to spend time watching adventure films and documentaries. It’s a favorite in our house. I feel like I can never get enough. (Do you feel that way too??) Here are some of the best adventure films and documentaries I’ve watched recently. I’d love to hear you reccomendations!

Cheers, DD

Find Me

An emotionally wounded accountant decides to break away from routine and find his missing friend, who has left clues for him of her whereabouts throughout National Parks across the West.

DD’s thoughts: Thus movie is touching and impactful – very much a “Under the Tuscan Sun” vibe but with a very realistic ending. Educational, emotional, and spiritual – must see. 

Meru

After attempting but failing to summit Meru in 2008, Conrad AnkerJimmy 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”. After attempting but failing to summit Meru in 2008, Conrad AnkerJimmy 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”.

DD’s thoughts – “Super inspiring and incredibly empowering!”

The Barkley Marathons

The Barkley Marathons is an ultramarathon trail race held in Frozen Head State Park near Wartburg, Tennessee. If runners complete 60 miles (97 km) this is known as a “fun run”. The full course is 100 miles (160 km) (distances are approximate). The race is limited to a 60-hour period, and takes place in late March or early April of each year.

DD’s thoughts: “This movie is really inspiring and creative. I watched this with my friends that don’t hike, and they were really captivated. This entire competition made me realize how capable the human body is…”

Valley Uprising

In the shady campgrounds of Yosemite valley, climbers carved out a counterculture lifestyle of dumpster-diving and wild parties that clashed with the conservative values of the National Park Service.

DD’s thoughts: “This was the first adventure documentary I watched. It blew my mind. The historical element is phenomenal.”

histocial and inspirational

Free Solo

Free Solo is a 2018 American documentary film directed by Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin[2] that profiles rock climber Alex Honnold on his quest to perform a free solo climb of El Capitan in June 2017.

-Wikipedia

DD’s thoughts: “I loved hearing about Alex’s Journey. I felt the film was distracting from his story. I recommend watching the Jimmy Chin You Tube video on how this film was made. “

180 Degrees South

180 Degrees South: Conquerors of the Useless, or simply 180° South, is a 2010 documentary directed by Chris Malloy that covers the journey of Jeff Johnson as he travels from Ventura, California to PatagoniaChile retracing the 1968 trip that Yvon Chouinard and Doug Tompkins took in their Ford E-Series Econoline Van. After finding footage of the 1968 expedition, Johnson decided to make climbing the Corcovado Volcano in Patagonia as his life goal and, after speaking to Chouinard and Tompkins, planned his own journey. – Wikipedia

DD’s Thoughts  – 

 

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Dawn Wall

According to Wikipedia – “In an unbelievable story of perseverance, free climber Tommy Caldwell and climbing partner Kevin Jorgeson attempt to scale the impossible 3000ft Dawn Wall of El Capitan.”

DD’s thoughts

Mile, Mile and a Half

In an epic snow year, five friends leave their daily lives behind to hike California’s historic John Muir Trail, a 211-mile stretch from Yosemite to Mt. Whitney (the highest peak in the contiguous U.S.). Their goal – complete the journey in 25 days while capturing the amazing sights & sounds they encounter along the way. Inspired by their bond, humor, artistry & dedication, the group continues to grow: to include other artists, musicians & adventure seekers. Before they all reach the summit, hikers and viewers alike affirm the old adage – it’s about the journey, not the destination. Mile… Mile & A Half is the feature-length documentary of that journey…

DD’s thoughts: Quirky, fun, and inspirational. Jen keeps the best attitude the entire film. The crew is very approachable and the film is really well done. This is a great film for people wh are at the beginning of their backpacking journey.  Jen sayd Mile, mile and a half

The Summit

According to Wikipedia – “The Summit is a 2012 documentary film about the 2008 K2 disaster, directed by Nick Ryan. It combines documentary footage with dramatized recreations of the events of the K2 disaster, during which – on the way to and from the summit – 11 climbers died during a short time span, creating one of the worst catastrophes in climbing history.”

Summit Movie K2

DD’s thoughts

Everest based on the true story

The Summit is a 2012 documentary film about the 2008 K2 disaster, directed by Nick Ryan. It combines documentary footage with dramatized recreations of the events of the K2 disaster, during which – on the way to and from the summit – 11 climbers died during a short time span, creating one of the worst catastrophes in climbing history.[1] Reconstructions were filmed on the North face of the Eiger and on the Jungfraujoch glacier in Switzerland in March 2011. Pemba Gyalje Sherpa was present for the reconstructions along with Pasang Lama, Tshring Lama, and Chhiring Dorje Sherpa, all of whom were on K2 in August 2008 during the events.

Everest is a 2015 biographical adventure film directed and produced by Baltasar Kormákur and written by William Nicholson and Simon Beaufoy. It stars an ensemble cast of Jason ClarkeJosh BrolinJohn HawkesRobin WrightMichael KellySam WorthingtonKeira KnightleyEmily Watson, and Jake Gyllenhaal. It is based on the real events of the 1996 Mount Everest disaster, and focuses on the survival attempts of two expedition groups, one led by Rob Hall (Clarke) and the other by Scott Fischer (Gyllenhaal).

DD’s thoughts

Touching the void

Touching the Void is a 2003 docudrama survival film directed by Kevin MacDonald and starring Brendan MackeyNicholas Aaron, and Ollie Ryall. The plot concerns Joe Simpson and Simon Yates‘s disastrous and near-fatal climb of Siula Grande in the Cordillera Huayhuash in the Peruvian Andes, in 1985. It is based on Simpson’s 1988 book of the same name.

DD’s thoughts

Eight Summits

According to IMDB –

EIGHT SUMMITS follows the oldest American to ever summit Mt. Everest and the 7 Summits, as he heads back to this great mountain to attempt the first ever ‘Double Summit’. Climbing first from the South side of Everest (Nepal) then heads to the North side (Tibet) in a record setting climb, at the age of 70!

DD’s thoughts

K2 - Siren of the Himalayas

K2: SIREN OF THE HIMALAYAS follows world-class alpinists Fabrizio Zangrilli and Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner with veteran climbers Jake Meyer and Chris Szymiec in a breathtaking high-altitude mountaineering experience. Director Dave Ohlson joins this group’s epic K2 journey on the 100-year anniversary of the Duke of Abruzzi’s landmark expedition in 1909. The documentary also examines the history and geography of the Karakoram mountains while contemplating the risks, rewards and personal nature of exploration in an age when there are few blank spots left on the map. Written by Adam Brown

DD’s Thoughts

Dirtbag

Additional Recommendations

(this I need to clean up but here are my notes…)

Ken Burns – National Parks

http://www.mcconkeymovie.com/

Damnation

Mt. Saint Elias and Vertical Frontier

Everest 1998 

A little old hat now but ‘A Thin White Line’ is excellent https://vimeo.com/84178875

Chasing Ice

Peninsula Mitr

 The Sharp End,

Long Way ‘Round/Long Way Dow

losing sight of shore

The Great Alone

The Man Who Skied Down Everest (1975)

Adventure film recommendations

DD

Florida born, Maine living. Outdoor life is for me. I love adventures - hiking -photography - running - camping - reading - creating - learning - traveling - deep eddy vodka - cats and living, basically. Follow me on social - @DanielleDorrie