Wild New Brave
28 minutes, USA, 2014
In 1971, when my father was about the age I was when I started this project, he abandoned what appeared to be a promising future to become a penniless rock climber. Growing up with glimpses of that past life, and the characters in it, I was always struck by the dedication to what outsiders often see as such a dangerous – and pointless –activity.
What did climbing mean to them? What was there to be gained in this time before climbing magazines and sponsored climbing events, when no one but a handful of peers understood your achievements, or even what rock climbing was? My team and I drove across the country to interview people who had been a part of the 1970s climbing worldto find out. The impression I got was an overwhelming sense of intensity and innocence. That combination allowed for a free climbing revolution, where climbers rewrote the rules on what was humanly possible. Of course, the frenetic creativity wasn’t without consequence, and not everyone made it out of those times alive.
A few months after we interviewed John Bachar, a climber known for his larger-than-life climbs without a rope, I got the shocking news that he had died in a free soloing fall near his home. He was 52. It became very important for our story not to exploit the threat of death like so many films on extreme subjects, but not to hide it either. By trying to recreate the authentic feeling of the times, Wild New Brave looks sideways at the array of characters drawn to a fleeting world where the sky is the limit if you’re young, brave, and high off the ground.
Director(s): Oakley Anderson-Moore
Producer(s): Producer Alexander Reinhard