What if He Falls? The Terrifying Reality Behind Filming “Free Solo” | Op-Docs

  • Published on Nov 2, 2018
  • In 2017, when Alex Honnold made his stunning free-solo ascent of Yosemite’s El Capitan, he was taking an unimaginable risk: nearly three thousand feet of climbing without any ropes or safety equipment. But was the climb made even riskier by the filmmakers who accompanied him?
    In “What if He Falls?” filmmakers Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin take us inside the process of documenting Honnold’s quest for climbing glory - and the ethical calculus of filming a friend who could, with the slip of a finger, plummet to his death.
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Comments • 10 570

  • Alexander Sillan
    Alexander Sillan 2 minutes ago

    What a mental dude...
    And that’s to everyone

  • Brain Sample
    Brain Sample 7 hours ago

    you just know its gonna end in tears one day

  • Victoria Tulipbaby789
    Victoria Tulipbaby789 8 hours ago

    So happy that I’m watching this in the safety of my warm comfy bed

  • servo honox
    servo honox 10 hours ago

    He’s climbing far up more than my grade

  • Drunken Pelosi
    Drunken Pelosi 13 hours ago

    The failing NYT asking the tough questions. I mean stupid questions.

  • Ungureanu Cristi
    Ungureanu Cristi 13 hours ago +1

    *FAKE* The mount is an paid actor

  • The Orange Carrot
    The Orange Carrot Day ago +1

    the mountain is 3000 coconuts tall

  • Shaman Gaming
    Shaman Gaming Day ago

    im sweating

  • Mackaronen Ja!
    Mackaronen Ja! Day ago

    6:32 that is a rope!!!!,,!

  • Janasheen Haider

    Plot twist he is actually spiderman


    Great climber ever in the history of climbing

  • Andy Jomono
    Andy Jomono 2 days ago +1

    Uncharted irl

  • Erik Stronghold
    Erik Stronghold 2 days ago

    Like boxing you don’t play boxing! You could die! Like free soloing, you don’t play free soloing you could die! Every other sports? You can play!

  • little Joker1000
    little Joker1000 2 days ago

    How df do u even grip anything

  • Eggo Waffles Gaming
    Eggo Waffles Gaming 2 days ago

    He can taste the rainbow

  • Tagailog May Pagasa
    Tagailog May Pagasa 2 days ago

    The human body is an amazing piece of machine that can adopt to almost anything

  • Agies Insurance Agency


  • Just Nausicâ
    Just Nausicâ 2 days ago

    Hats down my friend

  • Rzk Zkr
    Rzk Zkr 2 days ago

    I can't even climb a ladder to change my lamp without putting a mattresses underneath it.

  • Porky Shark
    Porky Shark 2 days ago

    Ok look I can go free solo up a 2 meter tree, but dis

  • Dado Vickov
    Dado Vickov 3 days ago

    Now is right time to put FREE SOLO on ,play station'..

  • Wesburg Willies
    Wesburg Willies 3 days ago

    Mikey seems like such a chill guy

  • -Fweeb -
    -Fweeb - 3 days ago

    The jimmy chin guy looks like markiplier to me XD

  • pigeon
    pigeon 3 days ago

    Plot Twist: He's a bird.

  • slimelover!!! world!!
    slimelover!!! world!! 4 days ago +1

    Me: two steps am I there yet!?!

  • Delta Drones
    Delta Drones 4 days ago +2

    Insane! This guy is a superhuman

  • SBCD
    SBCD 4 days ago

    Im at 41 seconds and I'm stopping the video.

  • Cody Flasch
    Cody Flasch 4 days ago

    how much money did you make off his efforts .

  • Cody Flasch
    Cody Flasch 4 days ago

    what safety lol

  • secrated
    secrated 4 days ago

    I feel dizzy watching him haha

  • Latha 111
    Latha 111 4 days ago

    How did he come down? Is there a way?

  • jaber jung
    jaber jung 5 days ago +3

    One of the greatest thing I have watched today!!
    He is Shure superhuman.

  • Aliens do exist
    Aliens do exist 5 days ago

    this must be the closest thing to impossible, forget all the atheletes in the world bundled together , nothing comes close to how super human this is

  • Εκτορας Μεντεσιδης

    Don t play with your live

  • Clementine Stella //Caroline

    I was watching him in tv ...it is really interesting... He is amazing😍

  • Gillie S
    Gillie S 6 days ago

    This guy's poor mother

  • SplinteredX
    SplinteredX 6 days ago

    This is insane

  • Jonathan Odqvist
    Jonathan Odqvist 6 days ago

    All men dies, but not all men truly lives.

  • The Offgrid Travelers
    The Offgrid Travelers 6 days ago +1

    Most amazing athlete in history!

  • Steven
    Steven 6 days ago

    just watching is awesome

  • Carlos Andrés Duque rivera

    Te admiro alex🇨🇴🇨🇴🇨🇴🇨🇴🇨🇴

  • Benjamin Alaerts
    Benjamin Alaerts 7 days ago +4

    imagine he trips while looking at the scenery on the top

  • walrider96
    walrider96 7 days ago +1

    one of the most incredible things ive seen.. i never thought it was possible to do all this

  • Shana Tinnin
    Shana Tinnin 7 days ago +1

    I feel a bit under par!

  • JoSays Baii
    JoSays Baii 7 days ago +1

    Anyone who came from Purpled's channel?(Uncut solo bedwars 10)

  • Just here Chillin
    Just here Chillin 7 days ago +1

    People say there’re not scared of heights cuz just they went bungee jumping, skydiving, or just looking down a skyscraper.
    But this! This is insane.

  • thegame6929
    thegame6929 7 days ago

    Ye but can he go to Stoke on a cold Tuesday in January and win? That's the ultimate challenge in any sport!

  • Dont watch me i Dont like u Dont

    White ppl are crazy

  • Zwagger 19
    Zwagger 19 8 days ago

    What if he falls?!?!?!?!?!?!
    Me: umm he dies

  • Nathan Burr
    Nathan Burr 8 days ago

    Why would the New York Times even want to write an article about this. It is morbid in wrong the man lived and now will forever be remembered as the free climbing solo man.

  • Kolli
    Kolli 8 days ago

    When I used to hang off of the money bars on my swing set when I was a kid I got scared. This guy has some balls

  • lala mama
    lala mama 8 days ago


  • Kadek Ananta
    Kadek Ananta 8 days ago

    Free solo is an art of carrying massive balls to the top of a cliff without any safety gear.

  • Tweety
    Tweety 8 days ago

    Is his momma a monkey or something? Radioactive spider bite maybe?

  • SurrealScotsman
    SurrealScotsman 9 days ago

    The 2.5k people that "Disliked" this video seriously need to take a good look at their lives..... So sad!

  • lithium
    lithium 9 days ago +7

    Alex clearly has a few screws loose and the crew eluded to it a few times.

  • KidiX Nine - The Elder Scrolls & Fallout Lore

    Joseph and Caesar anyone?

  • A.Z
    A.Z 9 days ago +1

    I wonder , what if you go as high as you can and you hit a spot where you just cant grip anywhere

    • HunterBroHD
      HunterBroHD 8 days ago

      A.Z this guys has done this route over 100 times he knows

  • tomatocan
    tomatocan 9 days ago

    totally incomprehensible to me

  • abel cordelier
    abel cordelier 9 days ago +8

    How can he climb with these 1000 kilos balls

  • Arbulon Rexhepi
    Arbulon Rexhepi 9 days ago

    Can someone tell me what is the difficulty of this climbing wall?

  • Guovssohas
    Guovssohas 9 days ago

    These kids who go up skyscrapers at night, thinking they are so tough when doing it, LOL. Do this if you dare, i guarantee you simply don't have the balls nor the skill to do it!

    A true achievement of physical and mental skills.

  • Random Gorkhali
    Random Gorkhali 9 days ago

    8:30 This line got me.

  • vantille x
    vantille x 10 days ago

    He’s like those goats that climb the dam

  • FUR
    FUR 10 days ago

    He died dummy, what you expect

  • Emil Darri
    Emil Darri 10 days ago

    Title : what if he falls" answer: YOU DIE

  • Wulfriks Reviews
    Wulfriks Reviews 10 days ago +3

    Holy.. I don't even know who this person was but that stressed me out just watching. Great job on this achievement and everyone involved.

  • Chrisv1965
    Chrisv1965 10 days ago +3

    I would like to ask him: how do you manage to sleep the nights before?

  • juckimal
    juckimal 11 days ago


  • anime pfp gang
    anime pfp gang 11 days ago +1

    Bet his gf loves his finger strength 😏

  • Maxfield LeBlanc
    Maxfield LeBlanc 11 days ago

    He should wear a parashute

  • mio mia
    mio mia 11 days ago +1

    He will probably die from something lame like food getting stuck in throat or mosquito bite

  • Holly Playz AJ :3
    Holly Playz AJ :3 11 days ago

    I got 1 word

  • Joel Zuniga
    Joel Zuniga 12 days ago +1

    Que huevos 👍

  • xXAlexdalionXx
    xXAlexdalionXx 12 days ago

    yo why am i crying tho?

  • Sami Malone
    Sami Malone 12 days ago

    This guy is a mentor!!

  • Frank James Bonarrigo
    Frank James Bonarrigo 12 days ago

    20 feet up Id be like call the helicopter

  • Hengki Torpedo
    Hengki Torpedo 12 days ago +1

    I see this man in National Gheograpic chanel

  • Cal Quinn
    Cal Quinn 12 days ago

    2 years ago today wow

  • cool beans
    cool beans 12 days ago +6

    Now do it again but this time sitting in a cauldron and using only a sledgehammer

    • Makaveli da GOAT
      Makaveli da GOAT 2 days ago +1

      cool beans lmfao i hope im not the only one that got this😂😂😂

  • F.B.I agent 729361
    F.B.I agent 729361 12 days ago

    Oh hey now I know what narrators look like

  • sougoi okita
    sougoi okita 12 days ago

    My hands were sweating and tingling at the same time 😨

  • Belltown Daisy
    Belltown Daisy 12 days ago

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Herr Hausen
    Herr Hausen 12 days ago

    I'll give him a few years...

  • Michał Urbaniak
    Michał Urbaniak 12 days ago +2

    After watching a movie i fianlly free solo my 8m ladder yesterday...Thank u Alex !

  • King Lawrence Quizon
    King Lawrence Quizon 12 days ago

    I heard that he was raised by lizards.

  • Elisa Sauceda
    Elisa Sauceda 12 days ago

    I bet his wife is a happy woman

  • jake Monk
    jake Monk 13 days ago

    One of the best horror movies of 2019 too no record break

  • KmarieVivian Howard
    KmarieVivian Howard 13 days ago

    Now thoughts of having to go down...it should all be down hill from here, yeah right, much respect for anyone to have the courage to do something like this, me, not so much. I’ll just enjoy the view from here...

  • KmarieVivian Howard
    KmarieVivian Howard 13 days ago

    My anxiety is going through the roof, stomach in knots watching this my god...being out in the elements, so much risk involved, like a death wish safe climbing to you...please wear safety harnesses please or have a parachute on hand in case of emergency...

  • Frank Piccirillo
    Frank Piccirillo 13 days ago

    he is not human...

  • IIISentorIII
    IIISentorIII 13 days ago +1

    this 10 min "doku" was 100 times better that the 2.5 Free solo annoying little girlfriend movie i had to endure ;)

  • Александр Егоров

    Я бы дал ему Звезду Героя Советского Союза...

  • jake scalli
    jake scalli 13 days ago

    Why didn’t they film with drones ?

  • K3Y•
    K3Y• 13 days ago

    You only have 3 more free videos for the month.

  • øyvind andre joramo  Pedersen

    alex i would be proud to call you my friend ..unbelivabel...i am so scaerd of higts ..

  • Zorro Star
    Zorro Star 14 days ago

    Helal olsun orosbu cocuna

  • László Grácsmann
    László Grácsmann 14 days ago +7

    Well for all the wannabes ,rooftop riders, chimney and crane climbers...there ya all go .... El Cap is waitin' for ya

  • Pulling the Strings
    Pulling the Strings 14 days ago

    Imagine wanting to take a dump when you're up there.

  • wusel
    wusel 14 days ago

    A little too much self-congratulation from the NYT Team for my taste.