In Everest, Josh Brolin plays the real-life Beck Weathers, a Texas pathologist and avid mountain climber who attempted Earth's highest point in 1996. For Weathers, to watch the movie about climbers being stranded in a blizzard at 26,000 feet is a totally different experience for him that it is for the average viewer — because he actually lived it. That poses the question, what does Beck Weathers think of Everest? In a way, his opinion about the movie probably matters the most because it's a story about his life. According to an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Weathers has watched the movie three times and each time he sees it, "it basically runs him over" and "emotionally takes him apart." It's not hard to imagine why; the movie is, after all, about a time when Weathers was literally about to die. Reliving that time probably wouldn't be an enjoyable experience.
The Everest disaster happened nearly 20 years ago, when Weathers was 49 years old. While stranded, he was nearly blinded, had little to no oxygen, and was in a hypothermic coma. His fellow climbers thought he wasn't going to survive. His wife, Peach (played by Robin Wright in the movie), and his family were contacted and were told that he was among the climbers that didn't survive.
Weathers stayed there in the blizzard, unconscious for nearly 15 hours, but managed to make his way back to camp while suffering severe hypothermia and frostbite that led to the losses of his hands and nose — but in the end, he survived to tell the tale.
Weathers' courageous and wildly inspirational story is one of many extreme survival stories that have made it to the big screen. Here are some other movies about brave individuals who showed strength and perseverance during impossible, life-threatening circumstances.
North Face (2008)
Based on a true story, the film follows two of Germany's best climbers, Toni Kurz and Andi Hinterstoisser, as they attempt to summit one of the most dangerous rock faces in the Alps.
Into The Wild (2007)
A different kind of survival/adventure movie, it follows the real-life Christopher McCandless (Emile Hirsch) as he tries to find himself in the wilds of Alaska.
127 Hours (2010)
Actor James Franco and director/writer Danny Boyle garnered critical acclaim for telling the story of Aron Ralston, who was forced to amputate his arm when he became trapped under boulder while on a hike.
This movie, based on the crash and survival of the Uruguayan rugby team on Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571, is probably one of the most referenced survival stories in movies.
Some of them have happy endings, while others are unfortunate, but they're all brave, moving stories.
Image: Universal Pictures