Exquisite documentary

I’ve watched my share of mountain climbing documentaries. A new one, Meru, streaming on Netflix, is among my favorites. Meru is a stone fishtail peak in the Himalayas that had remained unsummited until recently because it required climbers to haul their own 200 pounds of gear for the final overhang wall routes. The lure of this doc is that it includes an intimate record of two attempts by the same team, the first one failing within 100 meters of the summit. It also documents unbelievable disasters and horrors the climbers endured before starting the second. Because two of the three ace climbers happened to be world class photographers (one works for National Geographic), no other high adventure has been this well documented, or as beautiful. The climbers are intelligent, warm and humble — and obsessed. Meru is a stunning experience, expertly crafted, comprehensive in capturing all moments, yet briskly edited, and a joy to watch. It entails the most innovative, thorough, and brilliant photography I’ve seen in any documentary. — KK

What to watchClaudia Dawson