Tate Macdowell and Brian McDonnell, both fit, active fathers, were diagnosed with colorectal cancer back in 2016. As they underwent treatment—chemotherapy and surgery for both—they were determined not to succumb to their disease, they pressed on with the goal of resuming fulfilling, adventurous lives. They kept regular contact through text messages, spurring each other on through the ordeal of treatment. Both men had become entranced by photos of the Grand Teton in their respective treatment facilities. They made a pact—they’d get healthy enough to climb the Grand Teton together.
The Mountain in the Hallway is a short film chronicling Macdowell and McDonnell’s experience dealing with a life-threatening and life-altering illness, and how determination and strength has seen them through the darkest moments. It’s a powerful, moving film, and well worth a watch.