Aside from a good unsolved true crime about a disappearance where maybe the person just got sick of their life and ran away, a favorite documentary genre of mine are the ones about mountain climbers. It’s so unfathomably lame to risk your life to climb something high. I’m fascinated by it.
This is why Eye to Eye with Everest: Death on a Mountain was added to my watchlist. I’ve had some mixed feelings about several of these mountain climbing documentaries. I absolutely adored The Summit, which I haven’t written a formal review about here just yet. Finding Michael gave me mixed feelings.
Where would Eye to Eye with Everest come in?
What was good about Eye to Eye with Everest
The premise to this film is actually quite interesting. Two documentary filmmakers are following an allegedly blind man who plans to climb Everest. They don’t really have much of an intention in mind for what their film will be about other than to follow this man as he ascends the Madison Square Garden of mountains.
The setup to this premise takes a while to be clear but once known, it adds in a fun little twist where they question whether he actually is blind or not. He’s more visually impaired than actually blind by the way unless I’ve been fooled, too.
Unfortunately, this is about where the fun stops. Eye to Eye with Everest doesn’t have much mystery at all. It’s filmmaking with no plot in mind. It’s a film about nothing.
What could have made Eye to Eye with Everest better
I would’ve loved it if this ended up as a documentary about whether the filmmakers were being led astray by a fraudster claiming to be blind. It almost seemed like a small hiccup in the film. This is more about the two filmmakers talking on camera after the fact and the footage they shot at the Mount Everest Camp.
Most of the footage they got is pretty lousy. There isn’t much high up on the mountain. Something that definitely made Finding Michael a better documentary was how they did have some shots of mountain climbers in dangerous situations. This documentary was settled in at a safer place.
Eye to Eye with Everest suffers most from there not being any real plot. The filmmakers even make note of this. Several times they basically say they brought their cameras looking to get footage with a plan to figure out the purpose of the film later on. I didn’t feel like they ever did find their purpose.
This wasn’t a film about what makes a person want to climb a mountain. This wasn’t about a man claiming to be blind who wasn’t. Summarizing the plot is impossible because there is none. It’s like have a tub of ice cream and no spoon.
Is Eye to Eye with Everest worth watching?
As this documentary trekked on, I lost interest. I can’t recommend it. Some of the shots are fun and going into this world is always, in my opinion, worth checking out. Save your time. You won’t get anything new out of watching this documentary.
Overall Score: 4 out of 10
Maybe if the filmmakers didn’t admit openly that they had no plot I wouldn’t have noticed. Who knows? Next time, have a plan.
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