"Society of the Snow" is a gripping movie that has captivated viewers worldwide.
The movie depicts one of the most intense air crash scenes ever filmed.
It tells the true story of a Uruguayan rugby team and the 1972 Andes flight disaster.
Society of the Snow is a thoroughly engrossing new movie, now showing on Netflix, that has gripped viewers worldwide, leaving them speechless as they follow a group of plane crash survivors stuck high in the freezing, ice-capped Andes Mountains. Among the many things being talked about is the movie’s depiction of one of the most graphic and intense air crash scenes ever filmed. While uncomfortable for the viewer, this at least makes for compelling viewing and sets up a potentially gripping story, given that movies and shows about planes crash landing in the middle of nowhere aren’t anything new. So, for a movie that ventures into this territory to be making waves like this is worth paying attention to. That’s why we’re bringing you this post – so we can tell you everything you need to know.
Real Life Story
Directed by J. A. Bayona, Society of the Snow tells the true story of a Uruguayan rugby team and the 1972 Andes flight disaster. Air Force Flight 571 was chartered to transport the players to Chile. The flight experiences difficulties and crashes into a glacier in the Andes mountains. The film is an adaptation of the book of the same name by Pablo Vierci, who recounts the story of 16 flight survivors. Vierci had known many of them since childhood.
Society of the Snow catapults viewers onto the Andes mountains, one of the most inhospitable and hostile environments on earth, where they follow the survivors as they have to negotiate icy and merciless conditions to survive. Isolated from civilization, these individuals must resort to extreme measures to stay alive.
At the film’s core is the question, ‘how far will the victims go to survive?’ Death lurks at each moment in this inhospitable environment. With food rations running low and the cold gnawing at their limbs and organs, Numa Turcatti (Enzo Vogrincic) and his teammates are pushed to the limits and must make drastic choices to beat the elements and their harsh environment. Society of the Snow explores human resilience in the face of extreme odds, placing viewers in the moral quandaries the survivors face when all hope seems lost and the situation seems desperate.
Numa narrates the story as he tells of the death of most of the crew and his teammates and the miraculous survival of the rest, only to be faced with inevitable deaths over the coming days and nights, especially after a search and rescue mission was called off. Numa and the rest must think on their feet despite being stranded on a mountain. They are forced to search for food from luggage on the plane and obtain water by putting ice in water bottles and waiting for it to melt.
Their desperation becomes more and more dire as rations start to dwindle, and no rescue mission seems forthcoming. Whispers of cannibalism start to be spoken of as a means of survival. Will Numa and his friends resort to this extreme means? The difficulties of the situation breed contempt and animosity among the group, who are left with the horrible realization that to survive, they have to look to the dead for sustenance. Society of the Snow explores how such an shocking experience affects you and how you grapple with the aftermath of surviving a plane crash in the Andes.
Society of the Snow is not the first film to depict the tragic events of Flight 571. Other films, like 1993’s Alive, starring Ethan Hunt as Nando Parrado, also told the story, but whereas this film was more direct and lighter in tone, Society of the Snow explores the emotional heart of the film in more stark and darker tones. Director Bayona is in his element with disaster films, having helmed 2012’s The Impossible, which starred Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts. In that film, the Bennet family overcome great odds to survive the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami.
Bayona can threaten high-stakes action and suspense more effectively in the story than previous filmmakers. The plane’s crash scene is a gripping, nail-biter that stands as a perfect example. Bayona also uses more stark lighting to create a grounded and visceral film, making it more realistic than 1993’s Alive. The film is entirely in Spanish, making it more believable and compelling. To add authenticity, Bayona and the cast and crew also shot the film in locations in Chile and Spain’s Sierra Nevada mountains instead of on lots and sets.
Overall, the attention to detail, the lighting and the nuanced storytelling offer a gripping spectacle that makes Society of the Snow one of the best films 2024.
Netflix viewers and critics praised the film, with Sheila O’Malley from Roger Ebert writing, ‘A story like this fascinates for many reasons. For me, the fascination is primal and one of nervous empathy: Who would I be if tested like this? Would I be a leader? Or would I crumble?’ On X, Lima posted, ‘we need to talk more about J.A. Bayola’s extraordinary direction in Society of the Snow where he managed to deliver one of the most harrowing sequences in recent years.’
Other viewers expressed a mix of tears and horror at the unfolding drama. Alex B. posted on X, saying, ‘I’ll be damned if this didn’t move me to tears by the end, harrowing, my goodness.’
Society of the Snow is a gripping tale of survival and human resilience that will leave you on the edge of your seat.
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