North Face (Nordwand)
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A handful of men set aside their differences to conquer one of Europe's tallest mountains in this period drama inspired by a true story. In 1936, Nazi Germany is looking to shore up its reputation in the eyes of the world, and after a pair of German climbers dies in an effort to climb the North face of the Eiger in the Swiss Alps, the state is looking to find another group who can succeed where the earlier team failed. Henry Arau (Ulrich Tukur), the publisher of one of Berlin's biggest newspapers, is a loyal son of the Third Reich, and when his editorial secretary, Luise Fellner… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 84%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The mountaineers climb for reasons that have little to do with nationalism - reasons the film clumsily attempts to articulate in words. It's far more successful conveying those inspirations with stunning images of them scaling daunting heights."
‑ Ian Buckwalter, NPR
"North Face" is something of an old-fashioned epic shot with modern wisdom and technique, a man vs. nature flick that also weighs the importance of the individual vs. the social while exposing the mean cost of vicarious thrills."
‑ Tom Long, Detroit News
"Epic, intimate and gripping."
‑ Roger Moore, Movie Nation
"It's Kolja Brandt's gloriously edge-of-the-seat/seat-of-the-pants cinematography (much of the film was shot on location) that really packs a natural wallop."
‑ Marc Savlov, Austin Chronicle
"There's no subtext and not much character development, but those aren't really missed."
‑ Robert W. Butler, Kansas City Star
"A straightforward, wickedly suspenseful Man vs. Nature saga of the type that rarely gets made any more."
‑ Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle
"The word "gripping" doesn't do it justice."
‑ Michael O'Sullivan, Washington Post
"Harrowing German drama is a real cliffhanger."
‑ Don Groves,
"The images of the Eiger are both majestic and harrowing, and the action is as exciting as in any mountain-climbing movie to date."
‑ Josh Bell, Las Vegas Weekly
"The romantic subplot is underwritten and overwrought. More compelling is ... the impressively harrowing mountain footage."
‑ Sean Means, Salt Lake Tribune
"Philipp Stolzl worked in the same dangerous conditions as the original climbers, and we can feel the chill and peril in our bones. It's a shame, then, that the screenwriter, unlike the camera crew and the characters, was afflicted with such timidity."
‑ Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"This white-knuckle adventure is a literal and metaphoric cliff-hanger that gets a spectacular foothold on an unforgiving mountain."
‑ Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer
"Very likely the best movie ever made about mountain climbing, with some barbed commentary on life under Nazism."
‑ Louis Proyect,
"I have no idea if anything beyond the essentials is accurate. A good deal of it feels more like a 1930s movie than a 1930s event"
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"Harrowing historical yarn mixes Third Reich manliness and white-knuckle mountaineering"
‑ Jeff Meyers, Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
More reviews for North Face (Nordwand) on Rotten Tomatoes