Opening in theatres this Friday from director Joe Carnahan and Open Road Films comes a film that has audiences reeling from “The Grey”.
This film tells the story of Ottway (Liam Neeson), a man filled with deep emotion about the loss of his marriage. In the bitter cold of Alaska, a oil drilling company has hired him to watch the men as they work. What he is looking for is wolves to keep them from attacking the men.
On a trip home, the plane full of men crashes into the middle of no where in an ice storm.
Ottway quickly realizes it is not just the elements that he must come to terms with but the wolves that are stalking the survivors. Knowing they can not stay with the wreckage, they band together to try to find a way out.
With every step they take each man must come to terms with their life, the elements and their survival.
FINAL WORD: Neeson as Ottway is absolutely and totally believable as Ottway. There is a depth to this actor that makes his characters amazing to watch. His body of work shows not only is he versatile, but willing to take risks. Here, Ottway is quiet until he isn’t, talks when he needs to and is accepting when things don’t go according to plan. There is something very calming in his voice with the narration as well.
Grillo as Diaz is the absolute bad boy. He is arrogant with a little man complex (especially standing next to Neeson) but in his river scene it is a marvel to watch.
When speaking with Frank Grillo who plays Diaz I had to ask about working with Neeson. His reply, “He is awesome! It was a dream as I’ve always been a huge fan. THE GREY is Liam Neeson at his best with lots of action and thrills.”
About his training for the role, “I boxed for three months every day to get in shape for the role. I needed to be in great cardio shape. We filmed in British Columbia and it was a blast minus 25 degrees! But we are tough guys.”
Roberts as Hendrick is daring, sympathetic and full of hope. Mulroney is another who sees the situation as it is and is trying to stay one step ahead of the wolves. He has such a lovely memory that holds him together.
This is a film about man vs. nature, filled with moments of humor, moments of raw emotion and an invitation inside the lives of the survivors. I gripped my seat waiting, and became emotional at times. While watching the film blinking is a luxury the viewer can not afford!
Other cast include: Nonso Anozie as Burke, Joe Anderson as Flannery, Ben Bray as Hernandez, James Dale as Lewenden, Jacob Blair as Cimoski and Anne Openshaw as Ottway’s wife.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give “The Grey” four and a half tubs of popcorn. There is so much about this film that I liked I could write a small book. For over a year now one of my major complaints has been the detachment of characters in film. The cut away shots in scenes that don’t allow viewers a chance to really feel and care for characters. This film absolutely does that.
It is magnificently filmed (by Masanobu Takayanagi), the story is brilliant, the cast not only worked their characters but worked them extremely well. There actually are moments were the anticipation and angst rubs off on the audience and, it is very welcome. Director Joe Carnahan has given audiences something that’s been missing in a film for quiet some time – everything!
There are some scenes of violence with the wolves but the wolves put out a little violence of their own but be aware of scenes that might bother younger children.
In the end – live or die on this day.