7.3/10
406
3 user 2 critic

K2: Siren of the Himalayas (2012)

Trailer
2:14 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $3.99 on Amazon Video

Following a group of climbers attempting to climb K2 in 2009, on the 100-year anniversary of its landmark 1909 expedition. Experience the adventure, peril and serenity of a group's attempt to climb the most challenging peak on earth.

Director:

2 wins. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Summit II (2012)
Documentary | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The story of the deadliest day on the world's most dangerous mountain, when 11 climbers mysteriously perished on K2.

Director: Nick Ryan
Stars: Christine Barnes, Hoselito Bite, Marco Confortola
Dying for Everest (TV Movie 2007)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

On 15 May, 2006, double amputee Mark Inglis reached the summit of Mt Everest. It was a remarkable achievement and Inglis was feted by press and public alike. But only a few days later he ... See full summary »

Director: Richard Dennison
Stars: Wayne Alexander, Clemens Gerhard, Volker Hanisch
K2 (1991)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Taylor and Harold are good friends and avid climbers. While climbing one day, they meet a man who it seems might be attempting to climb K2, the world's second-highest peak. Always pushy, ... See full summary »

Director: Franc Roddam
Stars: Michael Biehn, Matt Craven, Annie Grindlay
Documentary | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary's monumental and historical ascent of Mt. Everest in 1953 - an event that stunned the world and defined a nation.

Director: Leanne Pooley
Stars: Chad Moffitt, Sonam Sherpa, John Wraight
The Beckoning Silence (TV Movie 2007)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

After a near-death mountain climbing accident, Joe Simpson's injuries were so severe he was told he'd never climb again. His recovery left him to confront the question: why, after coming so... See full summary »

Director: Louise Osmond
Stars: Roger Schäli, Simon Anthamatten, Andreas Abegglen
Messner (2012)
Documentary | Adventure | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Feature documentary about mountaineering icon Reinhold Messner and how he became what he is. This film is as much about his personality as it is about his extraordinary exploits - the psycho-gram of a controversial mountaineer.

Director: Andreas Nickel
Stars: Reinhold Messner, Maxime Belleville, Maurice Cretton
Documentary | Adventure | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Uses astonishing visuals to tell the intersecting stories of George Mallory, the first man to attempt a summit of Mount Everest, and Conrad Anker, the mountaineer who finds Mallory's frozen remains 75 years later.

Director: Anthony Geffen
Stars: Conrad Anker, Susan Robertson, Robert Macfarlane
Cold I (2011)
Documentary | Short | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

For the past 26 years 16 expeditions have tried and failed to climb one of Pakistan's 8,000 meter peaks in winter. On February 2, 2011, Simone Moro, Denis Urubko and Cory Richards became ... See full summary »

Director: Anson Fogel
Stars: Simone Moro, Cory Richards, Denis Urubko
Everest (1998)
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An international team of climbers ascends Mt. Everest in the spring of 1996. The film depicts their lengthy preparations for the climb, their trek to the summit, and their successful return... See full summary »

Directors: David Breashears, Stephen Judson, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Liam Neeson, Lhakpa Dorji, Dorje Sherpa
Messner (TV Movie 2002)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

First documentary on Reinhold Messner, the world's greatest mountaineer, since Werner Herzog's "Dark Glow of the Mountains" in 1984. Messner looks back over his career with surprising ... See full summary »

Director: Les Guthman
Stars: Chris Bonington, Reinhold Messner, Peter Strauss
Documentary | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The true story of two climbers and their perilous journey up the west face of Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes in 1985.

Director: Kevin Macdonald
Stars: Simon Yates, Joe Simpson, Brendan Mackey
North Face (2008)
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Based on a true story, North Face is a suspenseful adventure film about a competition to climb the most dangerous rock face in the Alps. Set in 1936, as Nazi propaganda urges the nation's ... See full summary »

Director: Philipp Stölzl
Stars: Benno Fürmann, Florian Lukas, Johanna Wokalek
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner ...
Herself
...
Narrator (voice)
Jake Meyer ...
Himself
Chris Szymiec ...
Himself
Fabrizio Zangrilli ...
Himself
Edit

Storyline

K2: SIREN OF THE HIMALAYAS follows world-class alpinists Fabrizio Zangrilli and Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner with veteran climbers Jake Meyer and Chris Szymiec in a breathtaking high-altitude mountaineering experience. Director Dave Ohlson joins this group's epic K2 journey on the 100-year anniversary of the Duke of Abruzzi's landmark expedition in 1909. The documentary also examines the history and geography of the Karakoram mountains while contemplating the risks, rewards and personal nature of exploration in an age when there are few blank spots left on the map. Written by Adam Brown

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

Edit

Details

Official Sites:

|

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 November 2014 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$210,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,421 (USA) (22 August 2014)

Gross:

$6,947 (USA) (10 October 2014)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
One of the Best Documentaries About Himalayan Climbing
4 November 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is not a grand adventure film like "Vertical Limit" (2000) with explosions, stunts, and computer graphics. Nor is it a drama like "K2: The Ultimate High" (1991), nor an inquiry into a climbing disaster like "The Summit" (2012). Instead, it is a documentary about a 2009 expedition to K2. Produced by First Run Features, a small company specializing in documentaries about a wide range of subjects, "K2: Siren of the Himalayas" was actually filmed on location, and the events it records were real.

K2 is the second highest peak in the world. Although roughly 800 feet shorter than Mt. Everest, it is considerably more dangerous. The 2009 expedition included about a half dozen climbers, but "K2" focuses on expedition leader Fabrizio Zangrilli, Austrian Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner (who would become the first woman to climb all 14 of the world's 8,000+meter peaks without supplemental oxygen), and Jake Meyer, a British climber (said to be the youngest person to climb the highest peak on every continent) who had climbed Mt. Everest and came to K2 seeking something that was "much more of a challenge." The perspectives of these climbers are supplemented by insights from Chris Szymiec, who is leading an expedition to Broad Peak, which is on the opposite side of the Baltoro Glacier from K2.

Whereas the budget for "Vertical Limit" has been estimated at $75,000,000, that for "K2: Siren of the Himalayas" was only a little over $200,000. This may explain why, although she is fluent in English, the film incorporates some footage of Kaltenbrunner speaking in German (with English subtitles). This was probably originally filmed for one of several Austrian television shows about her. Its small budget may also explain why this film was shot with small hand held cameras, including a high definition camcorder. In some ways, this is an advantage, because these cameras provide close-ups of climbers in foul weather and on the most precipitous slopes. And, by zooming in on the mountainside, the cameras pick out climbers as tiny figures, invisible to the naked eye, showing how immense K2 really is.

"K2: Siren of the Himalayas" takes us on the journey from Islamabad to K2 over some very primitive roads, one of which is partially blocked by a rock slide. There are an explanation of acclimatization strategy, and descriptions of previous climbs and alternative climbing routes. The great strength of this film is its coverage of the climbers on the mountain, as they make their way up the Cesen (Basque Spur) and the infamous "Bottleneck" through wind-blown snow and around an avalanche, and spend their nights in extremely precarious camp sites. There are also impressive panoramic shots of the neighboring peaks. "K2" utilizes maps, and tags superimposed on the screen to identify individual mountains, camp sites, climbing routes, and climbers.

"K2" includes about 20 brief segments of still and motion pictures taken by photographer Vittorio Sella during the Duke of the Abruzzi's 1909 K2 expedition. The still pictures are mostly sharp and dramatic, but, not surprisingly, the motion pictures suffer from poor resolution. Accompanying these images are portions of Filippo de Filippi's report on the 1909 expedition, read by actor Simone Leorin. One might have preferred to have all the 1909 material in one place, but it has been distributed through the film so viewers can compare the experiences of the 1909 and 2009 expeditions in comparable stages in their work.

Extras include (1) "Rescue in the Karakoram" (13 minutes) uses footage shot after the K2 expedition of the successful rescue of an expedition cook suffering from high altitude cerebral edema, and the unsuccessful attempt to rescue a Spanish climber stranded on Latok II (7,108 meters) after an accident. (2) "Death on Broad Peak" (5 minutes) describes the death of an Italian climber who fell from a mountain next to K2. (3) "Gerlinde on Her 2011 Summit of K2" (9 minutes) consists almost entirely of Kaltenbrunner's description of how she reached the top of K2 in 2011, despite a storm and heavy accumulation of snow. This climb was much more complicated and difficult than the brief segment in "K2" implies. Curiously, Kaltenbrunner continued her climb on this occasion, although her husband considered conditions too dangerous and turned back. (4) "Gerlinde on Dhaulagiri" (3 minutes) presents Kaltenbrunner's comments on her climb on Dhaulagiri, but no film footage. (5) "Bonus Clips" (7 minutes) include outtakes of material omitted from the main feature.

If you want to see what it is like to climb in the Himalayas, you should watch this film.


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss K2: Siren of the Himalayas (2012) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?