The movie's photography is breathtaking especially in 3D. Honestly though, it can only hold attention for so long. The movie has some moments of tense excitement. I didn't know who died originally, so I didn't know who would die in the movie. The issue for me is that I didn't really become attached to any of the characters save the leader of the group Rob Hall played by Jason Clarke. I became a little attached to Doug Hansen played by John Hawkes but the rest, I really didn't connect with, and this was despite a stellar cast that included Josh Brolin, Jake Gyllenhaal, Keira Knightly, Robin Wright, Sam Worthington, and Emily Watson.
What I do know, is that it is dangerous, hard, painful, and many die trying to climb. My wife liked the movie better than I did for one simple reason. All those gaps, like the different base camps and their importance, had been filled in by Into Thin Air. She was revisiting people she had come to know from the book. She understood them. She understood what it meant to have climbed all seven summits (it means a climber has reached the summit of the highest peaks on seven continents). She understood the significance of their deaths or survival and the extremity of climbing Everest. My two hours on the mountain lacked all that information.
I liked the movie for its intensity and astounding vistas. I was frustrated by its weakness in telling what was and should be a moving and intense story. It is well worth the watch, but it is not as strong of a film as it could have been.