Le meilleur des cordes

© Escalade Alsace
Yann Corby

"Un jour j'arrêterai...", the filmmaker's word:

 Two years ago, I started this documentary project as a total amateur in video but also as a true film lover. The scene I needed was just there: Rock climbing and Alsace. First, I wanted to make something that would deal with history. But, when I started to meet the actors and along the shots that I was taking, something completely different came out to me.

 My main goal was to make something different than these big productions we permanently watch nowadays. No matter the success, no matter the big muscles and the hard grades. Moreover, I wanted to make something that dealt with history because I was very worried about the preservation of rock climbing in our region. I wanted to paint a nice picture about the origins and the big steps of rock climbing in Alsace.

 But when I started to meet the actors, and by filming and discovering them, I felt that something else was coming out of the shots.

 I was filming real and authentic persons that were important in the activity and all of them had known a period where they were stronger. But the « Age d’or » of routes setting and of the establishment of hard grades was over in Alsace. Something very particular was emerging from these people. It was about not letting go, about not giving up rock climbing, an activity that demands and absorbs so much. Something was sweating from these images sometimes taken in an organized way, sometimes just taken as it came… Ah, there it was: nostalgia ! Even melancholy !

 Nostalgia and melancholy are two beautiful things. And I decided to base my movie on it, that’s why it is called “Un jour j’arrêterai…” (“One day I’ll stop…”).

 I also wanted to make an echo to this question that every passionate climber asks himself: “Will I climb less one day? Why? Is it possible?!...”

 I wanted to embellish this topic by capturing the simplicity of these rock-climbing sessions that everybody does in solitary or with a friend. I didn’t want to fall into this type of trendy and fashionable movies that every big brand is now promoted by. No dynamic sequences shot with cranes and drones, no powerful electronic music…I used fixed shots, most of the time taken from the ground and some simple guitar songs. To me, it is more reflective of the reality.

 Of course, I don’t pretend that I did an exceptional movie neither that I’m able to tell what the rock-climbing cinema has to look like, but I can tell that I made a movie that looks like the way I practice. Without any exaggeration, any lie and with passion. Not only because this is my first movie, but also because the persons from whom I captured those moments of life, fascinated me. I think I will remember each day that I passed with them, for all my life.


 And I hope that beyond the simplicity of my movie against richer productions, that this passion will be felt.

David Hollinger