||As action director Martin Campbell's heart-pumping thriller VERTICAL LIMIT begins, an eagle glides gracefully over the stunningly filmed mesas of Utah. Its shadow falls on a vertical rock face being climbed by Peter Garrett (Chris O'Donnell), his father (Stuart Wilson), and his sister Annie (Robin Tunney). Suddenly a backpack hurtles by, followed rapidly by two climbers whose ropes tear the male Garretts from the rock face. The excruciatingly tense sequence ends in tragedy.^After this stunning opening, the action switches to the Himalayas, where tycoon Elliott Vaughn (Bill Paxton) has financed an expedition that will take him to the summit of K2--the world's second highest mountain. Annie is one of Elliott's party. In the face of a threatening storm, Elliott recklessly insists the climb should continue. The storm duly arrives and decimates the expedition, leaving Elliott and Annie stranded. Peter leads a group of climbers--including the grizzled Montgomery Wick (Scott Glenn) and a French-Canadian nurse (Izabella Scorupco)--in a rescue attempt.|Campbell, director of photography Derek Tattersall, many daring cameramen, mountain climbers, avalanche specialists, and special effects technicians, along with veteran editor Thom Noble, deliver a beautifully filmed mountaineering thriller with even more heart-stopping moments than JAWS.