Man on Wire

3972thumbI watch a lot of films. I rarely blog about them though.

I don’t know why this is, but I have never felt the need to give a review of all (or even most) of the films I watched on these pages. My filmic endeavours, a large part of my life, have remained mostly offline. But occasionally, just occasionally, you see something you feel you need to shout about.

I have seen several great films recently, but the one I want to declare my love for here is this one. Man on Wire is a documentary, about a mad Frenchman who, with a rag-tag multinational gang of accomplices, strung a wire between the two towers of the world trade centre. And then he stepped off onto it.

This is the story of Philippe Petit, a wire walker, and his dream to pull off what he described as “le coup”. It is tense, funny, engaging, captivating. This is quite possibly the best documentary I’ve ever seen. It draws you in.

You realise quickly the madness of the heist, the danger of it. You wonder how it was ever attempted. Then you realise that these accomplices have been captivated by the character of Petit, and have come to the point where they will do anything he asks of them. And then you become captivated too…

I’ve included the trailer here, because it actually (unusually) gives a good flavour of the film. But you should really go watch this. Really. It’s only 90 minutes of your life. And I promise you, you won’t regret it.


Real Live Preacher has done it again.
Man, I wish I could write like that.
A story of good comin’ out of the worst of places.
Something I needed to hear right now.

So…” I left a long pause to soften the question that was coming. “Would you say that you’re glad it happened? I mean, surely you’re glad to be alive.

I don’t rightly think it’s a fair question,” he said. “The past is dead and gone and all that pain with it. A pile of manure might be lucky enough to have a flower grow out of it, but that doesn’t change its basic nature.