Monday, July 29, 2019

The Mountain Between Us: Redeeming Message and Sweeping Vistas, but Plodding Plot

Movie Review: The Mountain Between Us (2017)
Version: Library borrow

It was never going to be an award-wining film, but The Mountain Between Us gets points for having a socially redeeming message and sweeping vistas. The lead actors (Idris Elba and Kate Winslet) are pretty good, too. However, the writing isn't spectacular and the plotting is plodding.

Ben Bass (Idris Elba) is a heart surgeon trying to get back from a conference to do an emergency surgery. Alex Martin (Kate Winslet) is a socialite photographer trying to get home for her pending marriage. A snow storm upends both their flights home so they arrange a private plane flown by aging pilot Walter (Beau Bridges) to take them over a mountain and homeward bound. Only, Walter suffers a debilitating stroke and crashes the plane high in the wilderness. From here on out, it's not a matter of will they get home in time for their important business but will they get home at all. It's them against nature and the cold of winter in the mountains.

Add to that dynamic are the cultural divides. He's a doctor and she's a socialite. He's been married that she senses is keeping a secret from his wife, she's about to be newly married. He's Black, she's White. Multiple conflicts arise as they try to stay alive and find rescue. What they come to find instead is a close relationship that threatens to upend their lives if they ever find a way out of the wilderness.

The Mountain Between Us isn't the most exciting movie ever filmed. It has great scenery, but some of the situations seem a bit contrived and, on many levels, too good to be true. And the ending is eye-roll silly. Die-hard romantics will likely eat it up, but if you're a diabetic, be sure to keep your insulin handy. Fair warning!

The only good thing I can say about this film is, they signed good talent. Ibis and Winslet are good to watch squirming through the dialog and scenes struggling through deep snow and cold water. Sorry to be so negative, but I just need to be honest. This was not a film I enjoyed watching.

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