Reading the Screen: Aron Ralston's 127 Hours

Danny Boyle, director of such diverse fare as 28 Days Later, Shallow Grave, and Slumdog Millionaire, is working on 127 Hours, the true story of Aron Ralston, the mountain climber who, in 2003, amputated his own arm after he was trapped by a boulder.

rock-hard-place1You probably read about the story in the newspaper, but there’s a lot you don’t know. Ralston’s book, Between a Rock and a Hard Place (2004), fills in the details. It’s a pretty scary story — maybe you can imagine cutting off your own arm with a pocket knife, but I’m not sure I can — but it’s also an inspiring and, believe it or not, occasionally amusing story.

There’s also a version of the story for younger readers, ages 9 – 12, called trapped-canyonTrapped in a Canyon!: Aron Ralston’s Story of Survival (2007), by Matt Doeden.

If you’re familiar with Boyle’s movies — I’m thinking here particularly of 28 Days Later, of which I’m a huge fan — you know he doesn’t shy away from graphic imagery. And remember: the movie is about a man who cut off his own arm. I’m not sure whether I’m excited or terrified.



About the Author:

David Pitt lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia. In addition to reviewing for Booklist, he writes a monthly column about paperback fiction and nonfiction for the Winnipeg Free Press. He has contributed to The Booklist Reader since 2010.

2 Comments on "Reading the Screen: Aron Ralston's 127 Hours"

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  1. Keir Graff says:

    I read a long article about this at the time, I think in Outside magazine. It’s a story that stays with you forever. You’ll never look at your arm the same way again…

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