Matterhorn – From Myth to Trademark

(Servus TV, 2015)

It is the archetypical mountain, the “Toblerone Mountain” – a mountain as how a child would draw it. The most famous peak in the Alps, perhaps in the whole world. And it is more than a mountain: it’s a trademark, a myth, a symbol – for the alps as well as alpinism.

For the 150th anniversary of the first ascent in 1865, the film explores the fascination of the mountain and the people living in the surrounding valleys. On the north side, in the Swiss village of Zermatt, the mountain has an eternal presence. It is depicted in museums, in countless products, paintings and pictures. For Michi and Urs Lerjen, mountain guides in the 6th and 5th generation, the Matterhorn is their home ground, having climbed the summit several hundred times by different routes. On the south side, in Italian’s Valtournanche, the film accompanies another father-son pair, Marco and Hervé Barmasse, each Matterhorn pioneers of their respective generation, continually finding new ground on the mountain’s gigantic South Face – until the present day, as spectacular footing from a solo first ascent by Hervé demonstrates.

By contrast, Michi Lerjen’s grandmother tells of a very different relationship with the mountain, having climbed the mountain as part of her engagement. In a fitting coincidence, the film closes with Michi guiding his fiancee Maria to the summit…

no trailer available