[Reminds me of my mother — a historian, teacher, librarian, scribbler. (Ahem. I wonder who follows in her wake!) At her funeral I said of her grammarian and authorial chops: “For her, there was a good way and a better way to talk and write. She had no truck with the wrong way.”]
How Honnold gets it exactly right is the real heart of “Free Solo,” and why the movie is worth studying. Honnold is not a thrill seeker. He’s a perfectionist who understands that the achievement of one supreme thing depends on the mastery of a thousand small things. Much of the perfectionism seems to come from his mother, Dierdre Wolownick, a retired French professor for whom, as Honnold puts it, “good enough, isn’t.”
(Bret Stephens, “Alex Honnold, A Soul Freed in ‘Free Solo’,” NYTimes, 10-25-18)
(c) 2018 JMN.