IFC Films Mountaineer Simon Yates, having just fallen feet from the face of a remote Andean peak, finds himself miraculously alive on a precarious ledge deep within a gloomy glacial crevasse, his leg broken in several places. In the face of certain death, he questions his belief in God. He takes little time to declare his answer.
The International Writers Magazine: Review Touching The Void The closer you are to death. The more you realize you are alive DVD Review The simplest of words can sometimes convey far more than the most elaborate action scenes. This film is a docudrama about two young British mountaineers, Joe Simpson and Simon Yates, who in decided to become the first men to ever scale a treacherous Andean peak in Peru called Siula Grande.
They left for their task with a third climber who was to wait at their base camp- Richard Hawking.
The film documents the weeklong adventure Joe and Simon had. The first three days were rather uneventful, and the duo reached the summit. It was on the way down that trouble hit. Freak storms were the first augur of bad things to come.
Then Joe broke his leg and Simon was left to innovate a technique to lower his partner down the mountainside in foot increments. Then, a second accident befell the duo. In a blizzard, Simon lowered Joe over an overhang that hung over a massive crevasse.
When Joe could not signal what had occurred Simon was left in the precarious position of being unable to lift his partner back, and slowly being dragged down the face himself.
After a few hours with no signal from Joe Simon made a fateful decision to cut the rope to Joe, assuming he had died and was a dead weight, lest he face sure death as well. Joe fell into the crevasse, where he dangled for hours.
The next morning, a shaken Simon looked in vain, and assumed his partner had died. Simon made it back to the base camp, nearly dead from frostbite, and needed a few days to recover physically and emotionally with Richard. Joe, meanwhile, after much frustration, lowered himself into the crevasse and made his way out, then spent several days painfully eking his way down the mountain with an improvised splint, over glaciers and rock fields.
Most telling is a scene where Joe recounts that at his worst he still never fell back into the trap of praying to a god to rescue him. His own reasoned faith in his own abilities is what ultimately saved his life.
As I watched the film I got the odd sensation that the film was sort of a metaphor for the current war in Iraq- with Joe as Iraq and Simon as America.
Most folk say it would be inhuman to cut the rope, to let the injured, frail party fend for themselves, yet- as in Vietnam- that would have been the wisest action. Far better, certainly than both parties falling off the side of a mountain to certain doom.
Yet, Joe dedicated his book to Simon, who risked his life initially when he could have easily left Joe to his death without lowering him even once, and says he would have cut the rope were the situations reversed.
Yet, a part of me wonders why he and Richard did not at least go partway back up the mountain, in the few days Simon waited in camp.Touching the Void: The Harrowing Story of One Man's Miraculous Survival, by Joe Simpson (HarperCollins). I should start by mentioning that I have a strong tendency to be overly cynical when it comes to books about inspirational stories.
You will then need to type up your notes and submit them to me in Blackboard, "Lesson 5: Touching the Void Worksheet" in the "Turn-in Assignments" folder.
NOTE: To receive a good score on this assignment, your responses to the questions below should be comprised of a few sentences each. Staring into the void allows me to improve my education. I like to read optometric journals.
I hate to suck up, but I do believe that Review of Optometry is the finest optometric magazine available. Product Description.
The book behind the BAFTA award-winning film. Winner of the NCR Award for non-fiction and the Boardman Tasker award. Touching the Void is the heart-stopping account of Joe Simpson's terrifying adventure in the Peruvian Andes. Nov 22, · Touching The Void: The Harrowing First-Person Account Of One Man’s Miraculous Survival – Joe Simpson Joe Simpson and his climbing partner, Simon Yates, had just reached the top of a 21,foot peak in the Andes when disaster arteensevilla.com: Read All The Things!
Touching the Void is a true story, a miracle of sorts--a mountaineer left for dead by his climbing partner and his incredible struggle to live. I have always wondered how this could have happened and more particularly, how Joe and Simon felt about what happened.