FIND MOVIES
Movie List
Loading ...
or
Find Theaters and Movie Times
or
Search Movies

Review: North Face

A fit of Nazi peak
By GERALD PEARY  |  February 10, 2010
3.0 3.0 Stars

Nazi queen Leni Riefenstahl's The Blue Light (1932) was only one example of a peculiar, culturally specific German genre known as "mountain films" — mythic, pseudo-poetic narratives that flourished in the era when the Third Reich came into being. Philipp Stölzl, who's been educated in these Fascist fantasies from the 1930s, brings us a consciously revisionist version of the old tale.

Set in Germany in 1936, North Face tells of two young, apolitical mountain climbers (Benno Fürmann, Florian Lukas) who're induced to tackle the nigh-impossible north face of the Eiger in the Swiss Alps because Hitler wants a German up there. North Face takes a while to get stirring — there's too much inert talk on the ground in a five-star Swiss hotel looking up at the mountain. But you don't have to be a Nazi to be totally mesmerized by the intense drama on the Eiger: the nimble ascent, the calamities that befall our noble climbers, and the pitiable disasters.

  Topics: Reviews , Entertainment, Movies, Adolf Hitler,  More more >
| More


Most Popular
ARTICLES BY GERALD PEARY
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   REVIEW: LIKE SOMEONE IN LOVE  |  March 12, 2013
    A decent little movie, but hardly a major one, from Iran's master filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, who, self-exiled, here shoots in Tokyo with an all-Japanese cast.
  •   REVIEW: THE GATEKEEPERS  |  February 26, 2013
    Great cinema journalism, The Gatekeepers was the National Society of Film Critics' winner for Best Documentary of 2012.
  •   REVIEW: THE LITTLE FUGITIVE (1953)  |  February 27, 2013
    It's the 60th anniversary of this pioneering American independent feature, which greatly influenced both cinema vérité documentarians and the French New Wave.
  •   REVIEW: HOW TO RE-ESTABLISH A VODKA EMPIRE  |  February 20, 2013
    Daniel Edelstyn launched this film project after reading the spirited diary of his late grandmother, Maroussia Zorokovich, whose wealthy Jewish family split from Ukraine as the Bolsheviks were taking control.
  •   REVIEW: HAPPY PEOPLE: A YEAR IN THE TAIGA  |  February 12, 2013
    What Robert Flaherty did with title cards in his silent Nanook of the North , Werner Herzog manages with declamatory voiceover in Happy People : romanticization of the austere, self-reliant lives of hunters and trappers in the icebound north.

 See all articles by: GERALD PEARY