Fresh and freewheeling, mirroring the main (and really only) character, 127 Hours tells the story of an adrenaline junky who lives to hike the barren Canyonlands of eastern Utah.
By now we all know the story of how James Franco's character gets his arm trapped between a cliff wall and a large boulder, but director Danny Boyle keeps your interest by giving you a back story via remembrances and hallucinations, aimed at giving you a true feel for who this guy is, as well as feeling right there with him in his impossible situation.
Obviously he escapes (otherwise there wouldn't have been a story to tell, now would there?), and funny thing, it almost seems anti-climatic (as zen masters tell ya - the journey is more important than the arrival) - and yes, here, the journey (ie, the story) is compelling; filmed with precision and a nice use of lighting and close-ups.
To tell the truth, I was a bit skeptical of the validity of this film (I had heard about the gruesome "solution"), but really, the film is so much more than that, and except for lagging a bit shortly before the solution, is well paced - to the point where you don't even mind the tagged "and he still climbs rocks today" add on.