|Marsh's little documentary is a fantastic movie.|
Directed by James Marsh
Produced by Simon Chinn
Starring Philippe Petit, Jean-François Heckel and Jean-Louis Blondeau
Plot Summary: Philippe Petit, a French tightrope walker, plans to perform on a wire suspended between the World Trade Center towers in 1974.
Significance: One of the most celebrated documentaries in recent years, it was featured in the latest Sight and Sound Poll (#322 in the directors poll and #894 in the critics one). It also won the BAFTA for Best British Film and the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature Film, among numerous other awards.
Thoughts: Marsh's thrilling documentary is an exhilarating and inspiring tale of daredevil who dared to dream. Through a combination of archive footage, new interviews and recreated sequences, this simple documentary follows Philippe's attempt to sneak up to the roofs of the Twin Towers and perform a tightrope routine, and it remains compelling from beginning to end. The film focuses more on the stunt than Philippe himself, but he is a likable, crazy character from the get-go. Despite the dangers of this mission, it's impossible not to get wrapped up in the story of Philippe and his accomplices, who are also risk-takers. It might be a small movie about a forgotten event, but it's also one of the best films of the last decade.
This is the tenth film in my 2014 Blind Spot Series, as first started by Ryan McNeil.
Easily one of the best docs I had ever seen and the fact that Philippe was crazy enough to do that is ballsy.ReplyDelete
Yeah, it's one of the best I've seen as well. I can't believe Philippe actually pulled it off.Delete
Well. now I want to dedicate my next Blind Spot series to docs! I really need to see more of those. Nice write up. I haven't seen this yet, but now I really want to!ReplyDelete
Thanks man! You should! I need to watch more docs as well. This now pops up in Picture, Director and Editing (which it wins) in '08. ;)Delete
This is an amazing doc. Glad you had a chance to see it. Yeah, Phillip is a flat out nut. I mean that in the best way possible.ReplyDelete
I don't watch many docs, but this is one of my new favorites. Philippe was crazy - in a good way.Delete
I've always meant to check this one out too, I love that Joseph Gordon-Levitt is going to play Philippe in a film next year. I'm already all over that one.ReplyDelete
Oh, I completely forgot about that film. Can't wait!Delete
Good review Josh. Pretty suspenseful stuff here, which is something you don't quite get with documentaries. However, it totally worked here.ReplyDelete
Thanks Dan. Yeah, it was quite thrilling, even if we already know that Philippe didn't die.Delete
The last half hour of the film is spectacle. Not sure it needed to be a 90 min documentry though.ReplyDelete
Yeah, I loved the entire film, but the first hour isn't as exciting as the last half hour.Delete
This sounds like a doc that'd give you a real adrenaline rush! I need to see this, in fact I didn't have a single doc on my Blindspot this year, so I should add this one to my 2015 list!ReplyDelete
Yeah, you should add this one, Ruth! It's inspirational and very entertaining.Delete
Definitely one of the best films from the past 10 years. I absolutely love this doc. And the way it's edited is just superb. It's like a thriller with a very fine payoff.ReplyDelete
Absolutely. It's now my #2 behind In Bruges that year. It gets CinSpec nods for Picture, Director, and Editing, which it wins.Delete