Wook Kim
September 06, 2002 at 04:00 AM EDT

Shackleton's Antarctic Adventure

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
director
George Butler
We gave it a C

The tale of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s ill-fated attempt to cross the South Pole has at its core the kind of old-fashioned, stiff-upper-lipped heroism (think Apollo 13 meets Lewis and Clark at the bottom of the world) that still makes armchair adventurers shiver in appreciation nearly 90 years later. Pity, then, that last year’s gorgeous IMAX documentary — narrated by Kevin Spacey — does nothing to convey the expedition’s numbing hardships and daily perils. With an oversize canvas and undersize running time, filmmaker George Butler fills his movie with re-creations that are too tasteful, and sweeping shots of Antarctic vistas that are too beautifully composed. In doing so, he reduces a stirring tale of heroism and endurance into pretty postcards from the edge.

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