A while back I remember seeing a huge cardboard advertisement for The Mountain Between Us. I immediately thought of how much I loved both the actors within the film and told myself to see if there was a trailer already out when I arrived home that afternoon. The film appeared intriguing and I am happy with the pick I made early in October when I had a day off I normally do not.
The film is about how two strangers are both in a rush to make different flights and need to be at two different locales by the next day. However, the airline has canceled their flights and cannot remedy the situation so one of the passengers, Alex Martin (Kate Winslet), takes matters into her own hands. Once Alex finds a solution, she offers a suggestion to Ben Bass (Idris Elba) that will get them both to a connecting flight and both where they need to be the next day. However, despite their best efforts to make it to their respective destinations their plane ride ends in tragedy when the plane crashes and leaves them stranded high on the mountain. Eventually, after waiting for an extenuated period of time, the two must embark on a journey down the mountain in order to survive.
As a result, the film begins to take on an adventure feel. Will these two characters make it down the mountain? In all reality the common belief would be no. A suspended reality is needed when viewing this particular feature more so than other survival films in recent years. Coupled with the fact we want to root for these characters and care about their well-being we are glad to learn the intimate details of their lives. We want these characters to be able to make it down the mountain, even when the elements attempt to best them throughout the feature. Not at one point do we want to see anything happen to these characters, despite the fact the pessimist inside me could not imagine both characters surviving the mountain.
In addition, there is a will they wont they factor within the film which can be construed as rather predictable. In dire situations such as presented within the film, it is only natural for Alex and Ben to become closer. In fact, to not rely on one another, to learn more about each other, is a rather ludicrous idea. The more knowledge attained in this particular situation the better. However, by becoming more in harmony with each other, the two open up a flood gate of emotions and so-called secrets come pouring out of each individual. Audiences begin to want what is best for these two characters. We want to see them in their respective lives once more instead of thrust together in dire circumstances.
For these reasons, I started to wonder what I would do in Alex’s position throughout their journey. After all, these two characters put themselves in the hands of a stranger essentially. How much does one give away in these circumstances? Do you still tread lightly in such circumstances? And what about if and when one is rescued. What kind of everlasting bond does that create? These were the questions running rampant throughout my mind the longer the feature played across the screen in theaters. Thankfully, for the most part, The Mountain Between Us did a good job at answering most of the questions I silently inquired.
Ultimately, the ending was one that left me with conflicted emotions. While I can understand and appreciate having an open ended ending to some degree, as some of my questions were answered, these are not typical to the kind of ending I feel most viewers are looking for ultimately. That is part of the reason I enjoyed the film as much as I did upon it’s initial viewing. However, past that point I am not sure The Mountain Between Us is one of those films I would constantly find myself watching repeatedly. Every once in a while if I caught it on television, or a friend had the film, yes. I would certainly watch the film once more, but this is not one I would personally own. Will I continue thinking about the film for an extended amount of time to come? Certainly. In fact, my imagination has conjured up some ideals for these characters I am more than content with overall.