By Jeff Sherman Staff Writer Published Jul 25, 2002 at 5:39 AM

I've yet to meet an IMAX film I haven't liked. Few film experiences can top IMAX's 45 minutes of learning, escaping and experiencing beautiful scenery and sound -- all right downtown. With this in mind, I jumped at the opportunity to "climb" Kilimanjaro at the Humphrey IMAX Dome Theater at the Milwaukee Public Museum, 800 W. Wells St.

The film, "Kilimanjaro: To the Roof of Africa," opens Fri., July 26, and features a gorgeous ascent through dense clouds to the apex of the world's largest freestanding mountain, the 19,340-ft. Kilimanjaro.

From the director of the equally impressive IMAX flick, "Everest," "Kilimanjaro" lets us climb with guide Jacob Kyungai, a veteran of more than 250 voyages to the top of the mountain whose name means "mountain of greatness."

The story is made more interesting than other similar IMAX movies since it features direct storytelling from the six participants, not narration from a celebrity mouthpiece. The six climbers -- from the 13-year-old Hansi Mmari to the 64-year-old historian Audrey Salkeld -- have unique stories and face personal challenges as they follow Kyungai up the mountain through five climate zones that include rain-drenched tropical forest, alpine desert and massive arctic glaciers that are simply spellbinding.


While the scenery usually makes an IMAX, this film's characters also help carry it. Characters like Heidi Albertsen. No matter how thin the air grew or how high the team ascended, Albertsen's energy never flagged as she sketched, painted, wrote and photographed her way to the top. A native of Denmark, she grew up taking camping trips to the Alps with her family and developed an abiding fascination for mountains and adventure. You'll enjoy her spirit and inspiration of others as the group climbs.

Kilimanjaro was first successfully scaled in 1889, and the trekkers of the film join the many adventurers who have been inspired and beguiled by a mountain which is so massive that its weight depresses the earth's crust beneath it -- a towering island of stone that arose 360,000 years ago.

"Kilimanjaro: To the Roof of Africa" is distributed by the Houston Museum of Science and it's now showing in Milwaukee only at the Humphrey IMAX Dome Theater. For showtimes, special group rates or to make reservations (which are suggested for weekend shows especially) call (414) 319-IMAX. Tickets are only $6.75 for adults and $5.25 for kids 3-17. Seniors get in for $5.75 and your child, little brother or sister, if under 2, get in for free.

Jeff Sherman Staff Writer

A life-long and passionate community leader and Milwaukeean, Jeff Sherman is a co-founder of OnMilwaukee.

He grew up in Wauwatosa and graduated from Marquette University, as a Warrior. He holds an MBA from Cardinal Stritch University, and is the founding president of Young Professionals of Milwaukee (YPM)/Fuel Milwaukee.

Early in his career, Sherman was one of youngest members of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, and currently is involved in numerous civic and community groups - including board positions at The Wisconsin Center District, Wisconsin Club and Marcus Center for the Performing Arts.  He's honored to have been named to The Business Journal's "30 under 30" and Milwaukee Magazine's "35 under 35" lists.  

He owns a condo in Downtown and lives in greater Milwaukee with his wife Stephanie, his son, Jake, and daughter Pierce. He's a political, music, sports and news junkie and thinks, for what it's worth, that all new movies should be released in theaters, on demand, online and on DVD simultaneously.

He also thinks you should read OnMilwaukee each and every day.