“The Grey” excites as raw adventure story

By BEN DAUBER
Movie Reviewer
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Courtesy of AllMoviePhoto.com
At first glance, The Grey may look like just another opportunity for Liam Neeson to kick the crap out of everybody. But surprising emotional depth and intelligent cinematography make this a thinking man’s action flick.

The film centers around a team of exhausted oilrig roughnecks on a plane flight home from the deep Alaskan wilderness.

This crew, spearheaded by the reliably stoic Neeson, battle the wilderness, desperation, and most notably some fierce-ass wolves.

The plane crash and the early moments of the film rival the emotional burden of a well written novel.

The stunning shots of the wind-blown moonscape made the theater feel cold. I was truly taken aback by the sincerity of the film, which features one of Neeson’s better performances.

To sum the film up in a word, I would have to say realistic. Although there is still certainly an atmosphere of nostalgic Neeson kickassery, the director and writer of the film Joe Carnahan let the compelling story speak for itself.

Rather than mask the power of the story with cheesy pump-up music and montages of camaraderie, he let nature’s wrath and the torments of fate shine through.

The only bone I have to pick with the film is that conversation did loiter in some instances where cinematography or a nice bear fighting sequence could have filled the stagnant space. With more than enough action to satisfy the simpleminded (such as myself), as well as a shocking emotional richness, The Grey is a strong work.

Go see it, but dress warmly, and don’t expect to leave the theater feeling optimistic about the human condition.