The Climb (1999 film)

The Climb is a dramatic film directed by Bob Swaim starring John Hurt, Gregory Smith, David Strathairn, Marla Sokoloff, and Sarah Buxton. An unlikely pair develops a relationship in search of freedom from the inequities and colliding with the inevitabilities of life. It was re-released on DVD 21 August 2007.

The Climb
TheClimb CoverArt.jpg
DVD Cover Art for The Climb Re-Release
Directed byBob Swaim
Produced byExecutive Producers
Robert Rea
Mark McClafferty

Mark McClafferty
Pamela Edwards McClafferty
Tom Parkinson
Written byVince McKewin
StarringJohn Hurt
Gregory Smith
David Strathairn
Stephen McHattie
Seth Smith
Sarah Buxton
Marla Sokoloff
Matthew Ness
Music byGréco Casadesus
CinematographyAllen Guilford
Edited byMarie Sophie Dubus
Distributed bySpellbound Pictures
Release date
Running time
94 minutes
CountryNew Zealand
Budget$US6 million


John Langer (John Hurt), a crusty old civil engineer, has an arsenal full of memories. With irreverent wit, he rattles on, in his irascible humorous style, burning his spicy stories into the imagination of a young neighbour kid, Danny Himes (Gregory Smith). Danny is a gifted, spirited athlete with something to prove. Worldly, old man Langer has turned his back on proving anything at all.

Langer and Danny seem an unlikely pair, but their relationship soon turns from young caregiver/caretaker to student/mentor to comrades on a quest to free themselves individually from life's inequities and inevitabilities.

It is post World War II. Danny's father, Earl (David Strathairn), did not serve in the military and is considered a coward. Danny excels to overcome his father's reputation while Earl is actually more a man than the town knows.


Actor Role
John Hurt Chuck Langer
Gregory Smith Danny Himes
David Strathairn Earl Himes
Stephen McHattie Jack McLaskin
Seth Smith Andy Sweeney
Sarah Buxton Ruth Langer
Marla Sokoloff Leslie Himes
Matthew Ness Wayne Barto



  • The UNICEF Award – Berlin German
  • Winner of the Jury Grand Prix – Vienna Film Festival
  • Pierrot D'or Grand Prix – Pierrot Gourmand Film Festival
  • Special Mention – Montreal Film Festival
  • The Prix du Public – Giffoni Film Festival
  • Best Picture – New Zealand Film Award
  • Official Viewer's Choice – Temecula Valley Intern'l Film Festival
  • Best Action Adventure – Houston Film Festival
  • Best Action Adventure – Flagstaff Film Festival

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