Sometimes it’s very hard to get it right, especially if you are filming under excruciating circumstances. That seems to be the fate of The Mountain Between Us a survival film that depends on getting the right shot and mood in order to create a chemistry between two opposites. The movie starts with a trite beginning, takes on a difficult situation and then tries to bring a couple together in spite of the ordeal they have to overcome.
Finding herself in a tizzy over a cancelled flight due to weather, magazine writer Alex Martin (Kate Winslet) needs transportation to get to her wedding tomorrow morning. Also a passenger, Ben Bass (Idris Elba), shares the same fate, except his involves an important surgery procedure he has to perform.
Overhearing each other’s dilemma, they decide to seek a private plane to take them to their destinations and it leads them to Walter (Beau Bridges) an experienced pilot. Things start to go well for the two until they approach a summit of a mountain when something goes wrong. Stranded in the crashed plane the two have to figure out a way to survive.
It’s not so much that the theme has been used before as this one has many elements of more than just a few movies involving stranded passengers that get romantically involved. No, actually my problem with it comes with the character development and the unlikelihood of it all. Even the most athletic and gifted climbers would have a problem climbing down from one of the most wilderness mountain ranges in Utah with no food and minimal warm clothing (out of nowhere comes perfectly sized warm clothing), making this more of a fantasy rather than a possible reality.
The chemistry between Winslet and Elba seems as cold as the snow in which they are walking. Yet off and on there’s a spark or two of an actual romantic relationship forming. Facing the impossible, you would think that Winslet’s character would be a humble follower of Ben a surgeon, but she chooses the pilot’s dog instead. Almost as if she has a death wish she walks off into the snowdrifts not knowing where to go. As for Idris Elba, when he finally catches up with Alex slowly trudging down a slope he follows along like the dog she’s leading down the mountain.
Well so much for my rant. The cinematography is magnificent, the depiction of the crash very scary and the mountainous landscapes breathtaking. I’ll let you decide for yourself, but the waterfall you may have seen in the trailer, really exudes the coldness the two are trying to survive within.
The Mountain Between Us has been rated PG13 for a scene of sexuality, peril, injury images, and brief strong language. The film certainly will have more meaning and entertainment for women, but if survival films are your cup of tea, men should be able to stay awake for the nearly 2 hour chick flick.
FINAL ANALYSIS: Cold as the ice and snow depicted in the film. (2 out of 5 stars)
Additional Film Information:
Cast: Kate Winslet, Idris Elba, Beau Bridges, Dermot Mulroney
Directed by: Hany Abu-Assad
Genre: Survival, Drama, Romance
MPAA Rating: PG13 for a scene of sexuality, peril, injury images, and brief strong language.
Running Time: 1 hr. 43 min.
Release Date: October 6, 2017
Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
The comments within this review are the critic’s expressed opinions.