Jungle
The Grey

The Grey

Movie
Studio(s): 
Director(s): 
In Theatres: 
Jan 27, 2012
Grade:
B+
Running Time: 
1 Hour, 57 Minutes

Survival is one of the most basic instincts. The human will and perseverance to do whatever it takes to stay alive can be remarkable. When a small plane full of oil drillers and workers crashes deep within the Alaskan wilderness, it’s up to Ottway (Liam Neeson) to pull everyone together and survive. With frozen temperatures and blinding snowstorms, not to mention the pack of ravenous wolves tracking the group, the plane crash itself has become the least of their worries.

Stuck in Alaska, this group of strangers must put their differences aside and work together if they are to survive the elements. The Grey is a gritty, survival thriller that will chill you to the bone. Ottway has spent his life protecting oil drillers from wolves so he’s the expert when it comes to protecting everyone. That said, being well prepared with a rifle and being stranded in the wilderness are two completely different situations so making it through just a single night is going to be tough.

The Grey creates a chilling atmosphere where there is essentially little hope for survival. After the initial crash, the remaining survivors huddle around what little food and supplies they can find. Huddled under the smoking wreckage of the plane and surrounded by nothing but white, it’s the only bit of civilization they have. As the film progresses, they find themselves venturing deep into the wilderness, away from any sense of comfort, and frankly, away from any sense of hope. Traveling with them is a group of ferocious wolves, who would like nothing more than to savor the taste of human flesh. Led by a powerful alpha male, the wolves hunt and kill any stragglers.

Neeson does his best to combat the wolf threat but many times his attempts are proven unsuccessful. This isn’t some fanciful film where the good guys always triumph over evil and everything is wrapped up in some nice little package. The Grey successfully captures the essence of trying to survive out in the wild with essentially nothing. People die. Any hope for rescue can be crushed. Watching these characters trudge on until the bitter end is quite the experience.

The Grey does away with fancy special effects and outrageous action scenes for something more natural, something more realistic. It’s a chilling fight for survival that showcases the ferocity of nature and the determination of people.

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Matt Rodriguez
Review by Matt Rodriguez
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Comments

Jeremy Hunt's picture

One of my favorites from 2012. While I've enjoyed Joe Carnahan's hyper-kinetic work in the past (Smokin' Aces anyone?), I'd love to see him pursue more films like this in the future.

Peter Oberth's picture

does he punch wolves in the neck?

Jeremy Hunt's picture

never punches and tells...