14 Peaks: Nothing Is Impossible Review: An awe-inspiring story of a man’s quest to achieve the impossible

STORY: 14 Peaks – Nothing is Impossible is about mountaineer Nirmal ‘Nims’ Purja’s quest to scale all the 14 tallest mountains in the world in a span of seven months. On his way to conquer the summit of the 14 peaks, he went on to create six mountaineering world records.

REVIEW: 14 Peaks – Nothing is Impossible carries a very strong message of teamwork, perseverance, dedication and national pride. It’s about Nims Purja, a mountaineer, who undertook the daunting task of climbing the 14 tallest peaks of the world, all above 8000 m, in a span of seven months. When he discussed his plan of scaling the mountains while raising funds for the expedition, he was scoffed at and mocked for undertaking an impossible task, and for the precise reason, he named his mountaineering expedition as ‘Project Possible’ as he wanted to prove everyone wrong.

The documentary shows Purja’s never-say-die attitude and his determination to attain the impossible. The documentary also gives a glimpse of his generosity in helping others out. Look for the sequence when he decides to save a fellow mountaineer and in the process falls victim to High Altitude Cerebral Edema or HACE. The documentary while tracing his journey through the 14 peaks follows a non-linear narration and gives a peek into his past which includes his childhood, his training in the military school and his immense love for his mother. But while everything fits perfectly in the narrative, two chronicles that have been left half-baked are his fundraising campaign and how he shifted from Nepal to the UK. While the documentary talks about his initiative of raising money for his campaign, it does not tell viewers whether he succeeded in the mission or not. The relocation to London story too has been completely ignored.

The documentary is close to 100 minutes and it’s a foregone conclusion that giving justice to each peak is a herculean task but director Torquil Jones manages to overcome this lacuna with his narrative. The inclusion of Reinhold Messner, the first mountaineer to scale all the 14 peaks in 16 years, in the narrative adds to the authenticity and the scale of Purja’s achievement. A great sequence mentioned in the documentary is the point when he mentions the Sherpa community. He gives the entire credit of his success to his fellow climbers when he mentions, “My Sherpas helped me and they have names. Without their names, they are ghosts.”

14 Peaks takes us to virgin locations hitherto unseen before. They are raw, beautiful and breath-taking. Nims’ rendezvous and the documentary’s account about K2, Kanchenjunga and Shishapangma peak range in China is close to any thriller film. 14 Peaks is a documentary that teaches you a lot, foremost being human beings have an indomitable spirit.

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