(director: Hany Abu-Assad; screenwriters: Chris Weitz/J. Mills Goodloe/a novel by Charles Martin; cinematographer: Mandy Walker; editor: Lee Percy; music: Ramin Djawadi; cast: Idris Elba (Dr. Ben Bass), Kate Winslet (Alex Martin), Beau Bridges  (Walter), Dermot Mulroney (Mark), Vincent Gale (Airline Customer Service); Runtime: 112; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producers: Dylan Clark/David Ready/ Peter Chernin/ Jenno Topping; 20th Century Fox; 2017)

“A forgettable survival in the snow tale.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

A forgettable survival in the snow tale that’s slow-paced and comes with a sappy romantic tale to further turn you off. Palestinian/Dutch movie director and writer Hany Abu-Assad (“Rana’s Wedding”/”Omar”) can do little with this tearjerker, that’s based on the 2010 novel by Charles Martin.

At an Idaho airport, the flight to Denver is cancelled because of an impending snowstorm. The feisty photojournalist Alex Martin (Kate Winslet) needs to get to Denver for her wedding tomorrow, while the manly married black British neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Bass (Idris Elba) needs to reach Baltimore to perform an operation on a child. The strangers meet at the Idaho airport and together charter a private plane from the folksy pilot Walter (Beau Bridges).

On the flight, the plane crashes into a snowy ridge in the High Uintas Wilderness, part of the Rockies in northern Utah, after Walter has a heart attack. Walter’s dog and Ben survive intact, with just some bleeding from him while Alex has a leg mishap. Writers J. Mills Goodloe and Chris Weitz go back to a bag of cliches to map out an obstacle course for the survivors to follow, as Alex won’t sit things out at the crash-site and insists on pushing on. On their trek down the mountain to safety they come upon an
abandoned cabin and thereby they have sex by the fireplace. It leads to a corny ending that might make you scratch your head in disbelief.

At least cinematographer Mandy Walker supplies some breathtaking vistas to excite you, which were shot in British Columbia subbing for the Rockies.

REVIEWED ON 2/1/2019       GRADE: C