Society of the Snow – Movie Reviews by Ry!

Society of the Snow – In the Wake of Survival, Brotherhood and Hope

To tell a tale is to touch one’s heart, mind, or soul.  From an emotional value to an adrenaline rush, when we feel that touch, it becomes a pathway into the unknown.  Within the medium of film, a tale builds through that visual prowess of our own lives, creating a reflection of worth.  No matter the clichés, if the story feels real … then it will have a lasting impact.  In this review, I look at the latest Netflix Original.  Based on true events, it is a tale of emotional strength.  Through the rawness of characterization, Society of the Snow is a riveting dissection into the heart of human survival.

In a story about strength and survival, a group of individuals will have to find a way to survive the harsh winter in the Andes or perish to the might of mother nature.  At the heart of any ‘true event’ story are the characters.  No matter the genre, plot devices or foundational archetypes, the audience has to connect to the situation at hand.  In the beginning, we are introduced to the Uruguayan rugby team.  Through a generalized scene (on the field) we learn they are preparing for a match against Chile.  From here, we get a series of conversational moments that is layered with voice-over narration by Numa (Enzo Vogrincic).  Numa is the cousin of one of the rugby players, who gets invited to travel with the team to Chile.  After the generalized setup of the characters, the somber moments on the plane lead to the big catastrophic scene: the commercial flight crashes in the Andes Mountains.  From here, the filmmakers build a journey through the blend of characterization and survival motif.  As the days begin to mount with no hope of a rescue, the daunting display of the human condition is rife with a reflection of choice.  With a lack of equipment, food or communication, the group (together) try their best to decide on the best course of action.  Within the continued choice of using general conversation paralleled against Numa’s narration, you feel the rawness of the situation.  The struggle to survive becomes a moment of questioned faith, a riveting look of ravaged emotional fortitude against the will of the human soul.  As you witness the men see their friends die, it grips the heart through the irony of solace.  This layering of pain and worth drives the thematic appeal of simplicity in the moment, as the audience becomes witnesses to what it means to live and survive.

As the days build towards weeks and months, it drives the group to make drastic choices.  With nothing but their will to survive, the journey shifts from situational moments to forward momentum.  Through dramatic detail of the true event lens, we head into consequential moments of struggle and sacrifice.  With everything riding on a gamble, we head into a third act that brings the survival motif full circle.  This leads into a reflective climax, and a narrative styled epilogue.  Society of the Snow is a riveting true story that rises above the rest.  If you are a fan of true stories, survival films or characterized tales, this is one for you.  This is available on Netflix, but I would have enjoyed this on the big screen.

Full Score – 4 out of 5 (Full Price)

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