For his third film as director, J.D. Dillard adapts the 2017 biography Devotion: An Epic Story of Heroism, Friendship, and Sacrifice by author Adam Makos. The film shortens the title to Devotion and introduces audiences to the comradeship between naval officers Jesse Brown (Jonathan Majors) and Tom Hudner (Glen Powell) during the Korean War.
Summit Fever is lost in altitude
Director Julian Gibery makes a return to the world of mountain climbing in Saban Films Summit Fever. Michael (Freddie Thrope) is a young English mountaineer lured to the Alps by his friend JP (Michel Biel) to help him conquer the `Big Three,’ the Matterhorn, the Eiger, and Mont Blanc, over one summer. Despite witnessing fatalities while ascending the first two peaks, they persevere onto the final climb, unaware of a deadly storm brewing on the other side of the mountain.
Mountaineering films, for me, have always been a hit-or-miss genre. You can name five mediocre films for every Cliffhanger or The Eiger Sanction. Regretfully Summit Fever falls into the mediocre category. So when the plot begins, we get a clichéd introduction to our lead Michael who has no direction in life.
On the one hand, I can understand the motivation of his character possibly wanting to get out there and brave a mountain, but Thorpe’s acting doesn’t pull you in. The sentiment carries over to the supporting cast, as no one is particularly memorable in the slightest. Worst of all, Ryan Philippe is advertised as a significant player, and his role is nothing more than an extended cameo.
Gibery, an avid mountain climber, pens the script for the film, and this honestly feels like a passion project for the filmmaker, which is fine, but sadly the project doesn’t reach any new heights. It is fair to say that Summit Fever is a direct-to-video movie, but it is also a mix of movies you have already seen. Various elements of a much better film are copied into the film, but the result is disappointing.
Final Grade: D+
Summit Fever is In Theaters, on Digital, and On Demand on October 14, 2022
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