Today: April 19, 2024

Survival Movies – Ten Of The Best

As All is Lost makes its way onto Blu-ray and DVD on 28th April, FilmJuice wanted to take a look back at some of the greatest survival films we’ve watched over the past few years! From James Franco’s tortured journey in 127 Hours, to the epic journey in Life of Pi these are some of our the most tortured survival stories, see if you can pick up some survival skills watching some if them.

127 Hours
Critically acclaimed as well as being based on a true story, James Franco plays the role of Aron Ralston as he heads off for a day of exploration in the dusty canyons of Utah. But as luck would have it, not only did his trip ending up lasting a lot longer than a mere day after having his arm trapped under a boulder, but without having told anyone of his journey, it’s up to him to find a way to free himself.

Outsmarting nature, finding means to stay alive, or simply reaching one’s destination are usually the challenges protagonists are faced with when they must find ways to survive, but in Buried, lead character Paul Conroy played by Ryan Reynolds is left with nothing but a torch and a phone after being buried alive. Although we get to hear the voices of several characters, Reynolds carries this film with his performance. Just make sure to stay away from this one if you’re claustrophobic.

Life of Pi
Suraj Sharma stars in the role of a young Pi Patel as he struggles to survive on a lifeboat after escaping a sinking ship. As if this wasn’t hard enough, Pi soon finds out that he is drifting through the ocean with a furry companion with an appetite. Based on the popular novel by the same name written by Yann Martel, this film confronts viewers with more than just a fight to stay alive, but a fight for one’s beliefs.

The Road
What makes a good survival film is the story of someone’s struggle to overcome impossible odds just to stay alive. If the forces of nature and starvation aren’t enough, try cannibals and nationwide devastation. The Road tells a story of a man, Viggo Mortensen, and his son, Kodi Smit-McPhee, as they travel through the wastelands of a post-apocalyptic America in hopes of reaching the south. Based on the novel by Cormac McCarthy, this film tells the tale of a journey for salvation.

While not widely celebrated as some of the other films on this list, Frozen certainly gives you something to be afraid of that you didn’t know you would be in the first place! Think less Disney princesses and more wolves and hypothermia. Shawn Ashmore, Kevin Zegers and Emma Bell play a group of friends who get stuck on a chair lift during their winter holiday, but they soon realise that getting up is a lot harder than coming down.

Into the Wild
Following the true story of Chris McCandless, played by Emile Hirsch, as he tries to escape society in pursuit of his dream to live solely off of what nature has to offer. After graduating from University Chris abandons everything he owns and travels through North America until he finally reaches Alaska where he finds an abandoned bus to live in. While his survival skills help him to survive the wild at first, nature is soon against him.

The Grey
Liam Neeson plays the role of John Ottway who, together with his band of misfits, try to battle their way through the harsh Alaskan wilderness after their plane crashes. Though they soon realise that they are not alone, as they are hunted down by a pack of wolves who don’t seem to leave them alone. Dealing with death and loss is the theme of this movie, as Ottway and his companions struggle to stay alive.

The Impossible
Taking place during the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, The Impossible shows Ewan McGregor as Henry and Naomi Watts as Maria, as they fight for their lives and those of their family in this disaster film. Both visually stunning for its depiction of the waters destroying everything in sight and heart wrenching for its performances, you’ll be glad by the end of this movie for the life that you have.

All is Lost
It says a lot about an actor’s capability to carry a film if he is the only actor in the entire piece! All is Lost follows a man as he tries to make it back to society, after his yacht is damaged by a shipping container floating across the ocean. Using only his wits he manages to keep himself from going under, but with sharks, scarce supplies and only the currents of the sea as a means to push him forward, his will to survive is put to the test.

Rescue Dawn
Taking place in 1965 after his propeller plane is hit, German-American Dieter Dengler is faced with an epic battle for survival after the plane crashes into the jungle. After being arrested by peasants, tortured by the Vietcong and sent to a prisoner camp, the film follows the story of Dieter as he befriends Duane and hatches an escape plan from the camp, after constant struggles to escape the friends discover that the jungle is their actual prison.

All is Lost is out on Blu-ray and DVD on 28th April

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