Broad Peak ending explained – does Maciej make it to the peak?

By Jonathon Wilson
Published: September 15, 2022

This article discusses the ending of the Netflix film Broad Peak and will contain spoilers.

Broad Peak, streaming on Netflix, tells the story of Maciej Berbeka in two halves, each focusing on his two attempts to summit Broad Peak. The first time, in incredibly difficult weather conditions he makes it to what he believes to be the summit. On his return to Poland, he is welcomed as a national hero, is decorated with medals, and has the admiration of his friends and peers. However, 3 months later he learns that he did not make it to the summit and was, in fact, 14 feet short of that point. His crew had misled him to protect him from further risking his life. Devastated, Berbeka gives up climbing and settles into family life, setting aside his ambition. That is until 25 years later when an old friend provides him with one more chance to finish what they started. 

Netflix film Broad Peak ending explained

The expedition is making their way up to the peak and all is looking promising for them. The weather is set to be fair and they are making good time in high spirits. As they settle in for the night, they make plans for the next day, discussing the best time to set out the following morning. After some discussion, they agree to leave at 5 am, 2-3 hours later than Krzysiek back at the base would prefer. They also agree, against Krzysiek’s suggestion for all four of the mountaineers to attempt the summit push together. 

The next morning they are off and making the long slow climb to the top, they are making progress too slowly and Maciej seems to be struggling a bit to keep pace. Krzysiek implores them over the radio to pick up the pace. The weather conditions are good and they are all feeling fit, if they hustle, they should make it. However, if they are too slow, they will need to descend the summit at night, in much more difficult conditions. 

Maciej informs Krzysiek that they have reached the Rocky summit, the point at which he reached the last time. Krzysiek tells him that it’s time to turn around, to continue to the peak would be dangerous; Maciej is having none of it, and he fully intends to continue. The other 3 climbers agree and continue with him. They go on together and become the first Polish climbers to reach that peak, giving Maciej the closure he so badly needed.  Maciej finally gets his chance to stand atop Broad Peak, he takes his time to absorb the sights and breathe deeply from the air at 8000 ft, 25 years after his first attempt. 

In a sobering pre-credits epilogue, it is revealed to us that along with Tomasz Kowalski, Maciej Berbeka died on the descent from Broad Peak.  

What did you think of the ending of the Netflix film Broad Peak? Comment below.

You can watch this film with a subscription to Netflix.

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