When you die on Mount Everest - and people die up there all the time - they just leave your body. It's too difficult, too dangerous, to bring corpses down the mountain, and so people who are ascending the slopes will sometimes come across a dead body, preserved in ice, taunting them with one possible future.
In 1996 travel writer Jon Krakauer decided to make an attempt on Everest. He chose one of the deadliest climbing seasons in the mountain's history - 8 people died on one day. The terror wasn't on the ascent, it was on the descent as bad weather moved in and the climbers, weak from exhaustion and oxygen deprivation began freezing to death, falling off cliffs and making the kinds of tiny mistakes that end lives at an altitude higher than an airplane flies. The book he wrote about the experience, Into Thin Air, is one of the most gripping and moving true stories I have ever read.
Everest is based on that book and that disaster, and it looks to be absolutely amazing. The scale of this film looks bonkers - and that's before you realize it's in IMAX 3D. Director Baltasar Kormákur has gone to the extreme to get across the feeling of both majesty and horror that the climbers must have felt in those agonizing days. And he's assembled an exceptional cast - Josh Brolin, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jason Clarke and other people whose names do not begin with a J, like Keira Knightley - to tell the story of these climbers.
The first trailer is here now; I saw this footage at CinemaCon on a huge screen and was blown away. Everest is one of my most anticipated movies of the year.