(directors/writers: Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi/Jimmy Chin; cinematographers: Clair Popkin/Jimmy Chin; editors: Adam Kurnitz/Bob Eisenhardt; music: Gustavo Santaolalla, Juan Luqui; cast: Kris Tompkins, Yvon Chouinard, Rick Ridgeway, Jimmy Chin, Michelle Bachelet; Runtime: 93; MPAA Rating: NR; producers: Anna Barnes/Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi/Jimmy Chin/Bob Eisenhardt; Picturehouse; 2023-in English & Spanish)
“A winsome nature documentary.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
A winsome nature documentary from the mountain climbing and filmmaking couple, Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and the National Geographic photographer Jimmy Chin (“The Rescue”/”Free Solo”), whose previous films were well-received by me (Free Solo was an Oscar winner). This less tense one follows the female conservationist Kris Tompkins on her epic adventure in the Chilean and Argentina wildernesses, who with her outdoors-man entrepreneur lover and future husband, Doug, each separately connected with brands such as Patagonia, North Face and Esprit, bought and converted a million acres of those wild lands into national parks (but not without initial opposition from those governments).
It also tells of their subsequent marriage. Unfortunately Doug died in 2015 in a kayaking accident (his death is shown in a tasteful animated sequence).
Though grieving her loss, Kris found the strength to make their conservation dreams come true. This lovely film never becomes depressing, but stands out as a beautifully photographed film that is a moving tribute to millionaire eco lovers giving back to the people by donating the largest private land donation in history.
REVIEWED ON 4/14/2023 GRADE: B