The Mountain Between Us is lead by two brilliant actors – both British might I add! – Idris Elba and Kate Winslet. They play Ben and Alex, two strangers who are involved in a tragic plane crash and must forge a connection in order to survive in the extreme elements of a remote snow covered mountain where the plane fell. After a few days hiding out in the remains of the plane they realise that help is not coming and so they embark on a perilous journey across hundreds of miles of wilderness in order to find help. Along the way they push one another to endure and discover strength they never knew possible.
Idris Elba is a firm favourite amongst the public for his roles in TV dramas The Wire and Luther, so it’s great to see his talents on the big screen. His character Ben is a surgeon – which comes in handy when Alex hurts her leg due to the crash – and he is the slightly guarded character compared to Alex’s natural curiosity and chattiness. It’s clear that he is unwilling to talk about his personal life but as a friendship between the pair slowly begins to form we eventually find out his secret. Idris is excellent in this role, it is easy to see him as a leading man and his relationship with Kate both on and off screen is completely believable.
Kate Winslet has always been a favourite of mine, of course most commonly known for her role in Titantic, and here she is again acting in a survival film! Her character Alex is a journalist who was on her way home for her wedding. Out of the two characters it is Alex who is determined to move from their initial landing spot, even with an injured leg, and Ben reluctantly agrees. Kate’s character is instantly likeable and the two strangers show a lot of care for each other from the beginning which only grows as the film goes on.
The vast majority of the film is shot on location and there are some pretty epic wide shots of the two figures stranded in the middle of the snowy mountainside. Due to all the snow you can really feel the coldness coming off the characters and their struggle to keep themselves moving onward when everything is so bleak around them. The scene of the plane crash itself is brilliantly shot, there’s enough to give you a real sense of panic as the two characters realise what is happening but it cuts right before impact so you are left in suspense as to who survives. There’s also a few dramatic scenes of one or both of the two falling down the mountainside to a cliff edge or dropping into ice cold water unexpectedly to keep you on your toes!
The story line is of a classic survival film and the ending is very cliche but Idris and Kate tell it very well. You are rooting for their characters to survive and though it sounds quite bleak the film does include some humour. The absolute stand out of the film though has to be the pilot’s Labrador, the only other survivor of the crash, who the two characters keep with them on their journey. In nearly every scene, this dog is bounding through the snow, tail wagging and clearly having the time of it’s life!
Overall, The Mountain Between Us is a beautifully told story of survival. Kate and Idris were the perfect roles for the film and they work together brilliantly, creating characters that are believable and likeable. Although classed as a romance it’s not overly romantic, it focuses more on the survival aspect and the dangers the two face on their journey down the mountain. I would definitely recommend this film though as I thoroughly enjoyed it!