Touching the void

Touching the Void / Culmile neantului
2003 / 106 min / UK
Script David Darlow
Directing Kevin Macdonald
Cinematographer Mike Eley, Keith Partridge
Editing Justin Wright
Music Alex Heffes

John Smithson/ FilmFour

Brendan Mackay Joe Simpson
Nicholas Aaron  Simon Yates
Joe Simpson   Himself

When Joe Simpson fell off the 6344 meter high Andean mountain Siula Grande during an informal expedition with his friend Simon Yates, he shattered his leg, the bone splitting over his kneecap. They had only just started the descent and, with no rescue team, Simon began to lower Joe down the treacherous slopes until he accidentally sent him over a crevasse. There was no way back, and after desperately hanging on in the freezing cold for over an hour, Simon did the only thing he could - he cut the rope. Joe fell 50 meters into a cave of ice but miraculously survived, and his amazing mix of courage and blind stubbornness saw him inch his way back down the mountain over three agonizing days. Based on Simpson's book of the same name, written after the climbing community practically excommunicated Yates for his actions.


Kevin Macdonald (born 28 October 1967) is a Scottish director. His films include the documentary about the 1972 murder of 11 Israeli athletes, One Day in September (1999), the rock-climbing documentary Touching the Void (2003), the drama The Last King of Scotland (2006), the political thriller State of Play (2009), and the Bob Marley documentary Marley (2012). He won an Oscar, Best Director fromm BAFTA Awards, Best Director from British Independent Film Award.