By Nico Beland
Movie Review: B+ (3 stars)
Two years ago, we went on a 3D adventure through space with Alfonso Cuarón, Sandra Bullock, and George Clooney in Gravity. Now director, Baltasar Kormákur (A Little Trip to Heaven, Contraband, 2 Guns) brings us a beautifully filmed and gripping 3D journey to Mt. Everest with Everest, based on the true story about the 1996 Mount Everest Disaster.
The film was fortunate enough to get a large format 3D release (such as IMAX, RPX, and Cinemark XD) one week before its official wide release date, and for good reasons. Everest should only be viewed in large format 3D, especially IMAX 3D, because it looks and sounds like you’re right there with these mountain climbers, and as a film on its own, it’s a solid execution.
In May 1996, a group of expeditions come together and prepare to summit Mt. Everest and hopefully make it to the top and back safely. The group consists of New Zealander expedition group leader, Rob Hall (Jason Clarke-Zero Dark Thirty, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Terminator: Genisys), doctor, Beck Weathers (Josh Brolin-No Country For Old Men, True Grit, Men in Black 3), their friend, Guy Cotter (Sam Worthington-Terminator: Salvation, Avatar, Clash of the Titans), and expedition group leader, Scott Fischer (Jake Gyllenhaal-Prisoners, Nightcrawler, Southpaw) to name a few.
Upon getting there, the mountain climbing journey begins, from walking across a bridge above a massive fall to your death to climbing over very slippery rocks next to a cliff. Once the group makes it to the top of the mountain, it soon becomes a catastrophe as massive storms and avalanches begin and the adventure becomes a race back down to the campsite before their chilling death.
The film also stars Keira Knightley (Pirates of the Caribbean, Atonement, Anna Karenina), Emily Watson (Punch-Drunk Love, Red Dragon, Corpse Bride), and Michael Kelly (Man on the Moon, Unbreakable, Invincible).
Overall, Everest is a well-executed disaster movie, unlike the majority of Roland Emmerich films. The characters are developed decently, the cinematography and scenes of Mt. Everest are gorgeous, the 3D is used well, and the plot and suspense are gripping and leave you on the edge of your seat.
The film does have its slow moments to develop characters, but it has enough time in between special effects and suspense scenes. The acting is solid but nothing Oscar worthy, the cast is talented, and the drama is done very well.
I wouldn’t say the 3D on Everest is on par with other 3D films like Avatar, Hugo, or Gravity, but it’s still quite impressive and if you’re watching it on IMAX or a large format screen, you feel like you’re right there on Mt. Everest with these mountain climbers and the mountain itself looks beautiful in 3D, I find it a bit strange that the best 3D scenes are the shots of the mountain instead of the over the top peril.
Don’t expect a game-changer with 3D, but if you want to experience a movie rather than watch it and if you want to see the majesty and terror of Everest, you’ll have a great time with Everest. The movie on its own is good, but in IMAX and large format 3D, it’s amazing and really “Cool”.