Friday, November 13, 2020

The Climb Review: A Supportive and Toxic Friendship Through the Years

Release date: March 20, 2020
Running time: 97 minutes
Starring: Michael Angelo Covino, Kyle Marvin, Gayle Rankin 

The Climb is an interesting dark comedy / drama about major events in two friend's lives.  Kyle (Marvin) is a genuinely good person who cares about everyone and is loved by everyone.  Mike (Covino) is a selfish, toxic person that cares for Kyle but cares about himself more.  The movie features sequences of these two interacting at various points in their lives, and the hilarity, problems, and lessons that ensue from these interactions.  

Your enjoyment of the Climb will greatly depend on your like or dislike of Covino and Marvin.  Much of the movie focuses on these two, and specifically on these two talking (or arguing or joking).  The friends have a great dynamic and their interactions are humorous, toxic, and caring.  The film is also peppered with appearances by several other characters, who interact naturally with the friends.  But the main enjoyment comes from these two.  The dialog is definitely front and center in this movie.  Probably as an homage to the original short film nature of the Climb, the movie's seven acts are shot as long one takes that really emphasize the conversation.  It is an interesting idea and helps you to follow along with the conversation without the distractions of cuts.  It is an impressive feat and one that ensures that you are focused on the people and their interactions.

However, this movie is mostly conversation between the two main friends, so if you are looking for something more exciting this won't be for you.  Some of these scenes go a little long and some are painful to watch.  And overall, the film is just about these two friends and their time through seven distinct time periods.  These can be hit or miss depending on what is going on, and some of the scenes can drag.  And many of the scenes have weird, foreign language transitions that didn't seem to add much to the interactions that you just observed or were about it.  It wasn't necessarily bad, it just threw me off between scenes.  But that being said, the Climb introduces us to two interesting friends and the trials that their friendship goes through.  It also gives some decent lessons on life, friendship, and finding what is important to you.  

The Climb is an interesting look into two very different friends with sharp writing, funny, awkward moments, and some good overall lessons.   

Rent It
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The Climb is in theaters on Friday, November 13.

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