Director, writer and lead actor, Thomas Salvador’s beguiling new film, THE MOUNTAIN, follows Pierre, a Parisian in his forties, on his emerging quest to break from his daily routine of morning coffee in a run-down apartment, his phones, his keys, and his computer on the train to work. During a business meeting to demonstrate the capability of a robot to some clients he is distracted by the sight of a mountain. Shortly after his enigmatic encounter with the natural world Pierre begins to act on an unfathomable journey into the unexplored mountainous terrain. He gears up very cautiously, gets informed and takes the cable car up to the Aiguille du Midi, in the Mont-Blanc Massif, with its spectacular view of the French, Swiss and Italian Alps. Setting up his small tent slightly below, he slowly learns about hiking on the glacier, then climbs the passes with and then without guidance. Days pass, more or less easily and comfortably, in his introspective observation of the environment. Pierre feels good, there, in his place, with the essentials and forms only one meaningful connection with the chef of the Aiguille du Midi restaurant (Louise Bourgoin). But this drastic return to nature soon takes a turn when a mountain wall collapses and attracts his attention to very strange lights… Director, writer and lead actor, Thomas Salvador (VINCENT) stops by to talk about the inherent challenges that come with shooting a feature film on a mountainside, what drew him to make this visually stunning ode to the inexorable pull of nature and how little we understand about the world we live in.
About the filmmaker – Thomas Salvador is a filmmaker, screenwriter, and actor in his own films. He has directed 6 short films that have been selected and awarded in numerous festivals, including PETITS PAS (Cannes Directors’ Fortnight) and DE SORTIE (Jean Vigo Prize 2006). Hosted at the Villa Medici in Rome, he wrote his first feature film VINCENT, released in 2015 and screened at more than forty festivals in France and abroad. THE MOUNTAIN is his second feature film.
“The beautiful cinematography, courtesy of Alexis Kavyrchine … makes the Alps come alive (in every way, as we discover), and the emotional restraint of both Salvador and Bourgoin serve to heighten the eventual catharsis at the end.” – Christopher Llewellyn Reed, Hammer to Nail
“In a work in which nature, landscape and climate take starring roles, Salvador’s muted performance of a man who is attempting to lose himself in his surroundings feels right.” – Lee Marshall, Screen International