Magnetic Mountains is an independent documentary that follows the story of an everyman, who after falling from an Alpine north face, is struggling to find a balance. Featuring some of the biggest names in mountain sports, it will explore the psychology of risk taking in the mountains, asking – is it worth it?
In October 2014, Steve Wakeford, an award winning sports editor, fell 70 metres whilst climbing a mountain known as Les Petites Jorasses in the French Alps. It was a fall that required him to be airlifted out of the mountains suffering from a number of serious injuries and resulted in him being temporarily left in a wheelchair - he is lucky to be alive.
Whilst in the confines of this wheelchair, and at the start of a long journey of rehabilitation, he began to ask himself some serious questions -
"Regardless of injury or trauma, why are we drawn to the mountains in the first place? Is risk an essential part of what we do? Our experiences form us, so do we perceive risk differently after an accident? Perhaps most importantly, why is it that I am planning to climb the same route from which I fell?"
Unable to do any of the things that make him "him", Steve lost his sense of direction and identity. He decided to pick up his camera and document his journey.
And so, Magnetic Mountains was born.
After the trauma he suffered, and with the break down of a relationship, Steve had to seriously reflect upon why he had put himself in that position in the first place, and why he was considering going back for more. In order to start finding answers, Steve decided to meet with some of the leading figures in alpine sports - household names such as Sir Chris Bonington, Tommy Caldwell, Steve House, Eva Walkner and Liv Sansov.
But if anything, this process has led to him needing to ask further, more challenging questions - both of himself and the community in which he is a part of - about what is essentially a middle-class, privileged past-time. Is playing in the mountains selfish? What impact does it have on our relationships? Rather than equip us for 'everyday life', does our time in the mountains actually detach us from reality?
Put down your go-pro, lift your eyes from social media - think about the impact of what you do and what you share. What do you contribute? Is what you do of worth?
. . .
When he picked up his camera during his long and dark days of rehab, even Steve couldn't have predicted quite how much the next 18 months would have in store for him.
Even now, as he prepares to re-climb the route from which he fell, he's discovering that perhaps the bigger mountains to climb are, in fact, at home...
If you're questioning why you should invest in a film when there is so much need in the world - then thank goodness! If you have a spare £35 then of course you should donate it to charity, to a cause that is close to your heart. It's something that's important to us to. Our Director and Producer donate monthly to Save the Children and War Child, Cancer and Alzheimers charities.
As well as feeling passionate about this, we also feel passionate about our work. As first-time adventure filmmakers, we are really blessed to have a small, experienced team behind us who believe in our vision for this project. Sadly, the adventure film industry, and often the creative industries in general, are renowned for poor pay, for people being asked to do work for free, for people not being valued for what they bring to the table - we would like to change this. And this is where you play a huge part.
WHERE IS MY MONEY GOING?
We are so humbled that what started as a way for Steve to keep himself occupied whilst in a wheelchair has evolved into the project it is today, thanks to the amazing, supportive community we are a part of. This is a passion project - until now we've donated our time, money and resources to bringing this project to life. But we cannot continue without your support!
Films are expensive to make (to put our budget in perspective, Touching the Void had a budget of £2million, while Everest came in at a whopping $55 million!). In order to keep our costs to a minimum we have been able to keep a lot of the work 'in-house' and we are also immensely grateful to many friends and contributors who have generously and freely given of their time and energy to help with this project.
We're happy to be transparent about where this crowdfunding money is going - solely to paying all the people involved (ourselves as Director and Producer, NOT included!). This includes cameramen, aerial imagery specialists, runners, guides, post-production (audio, colour, graphics, artwork, distribution etc), travel and insurance (and also incorporates the Kickstarter fees). In the locations we are shooting, to produce the quality of footage we are aiming for - this all comes at a price. And one we want to pay fairly.
HOW ELSE CAN YOU HELP?
This is a community. As well as financially, you can support us by liking, following, reading and sharing our journey...
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/magneticmountains
- Instagram: @MagneticMtns
- Twitter: @MagneticMtns
- Website: www.magneticmountains.com
- Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/magneticmountains (watch promo in HD)
A HUGE THANK YOU TO OUR KIT SPONSORS & CONTRIBUTORS:
And equally to our interviewees who have not only graciously given of their time but also helped towards this crowdfunding campaign. You're amazing, Thank you!
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THANK YOU for taking the time to check out our campaign!
Risks and challenges
Hopefully the taster video above shows you what a long way we have already come! But there's still a long way to go. Every documentary film comes with its own challenges, and this one will be no different.
The logistics of some of our shoots have and will be immensely challenging - fortunately we have an experienced, highly qualified team behind us, used to working in both hostile and high-pressure environments.
We have already been so humbled by the overwhelming support we have received from both professionals and our community alike. We're looking forward to growing this through the crowdfunding campaign - with YOUR help!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)