“Free Solo” won the Grand Prize at the Kendal Mountain Festival on Saturday night. A contender in Kendal’s main International Film Competition, the documentary from E. Chai Vasarhelyi, who helmed Sundance hit “Meru
,” and Jimmy Chin
, a climber in that film, was the overall winner in a lineup of 90 mountain and adventure films.
The audience – despite being predominantly mountaineers and outdoor enthusiasts themselves – still shuddered, flinched and sweated as the story of this unroped climb of the El Capitan rockface by the climber Alex Honnold
unfolded. Not only does this film record the extraordinary achievement of a near impossible climb, but it also is not afraid to confront the climber and colleagues with the real possibility of failure and death.
“Wonderful Loser,” from Lithuania’s Arunas Matelis
, took the Special Judges Prize. along with Krystle Wright
and Toby Pike
’s short “Chasing Monsters
,” from Austrialia. Already with a clutch of awards to its credit,