A bloody good wolf tale

A bloody good wolf tale

A bloody good wolf tale

The Grey
English (A)
Cast: Liam Neeson, Frank Grillo, Dermot Mulroney, others
Director: John Carnahan

Films based on man versus nature are nothing new (Jaws, Anaconda, The Edge). Without his weapons and in remote wilderness, Homo sapiens are no match for wild creatures. In The Grey, men are pursued by wolves, qualifying it as a thriller as well as an animal adventure film.

Liam Neeson stars as John Ottway, a sharpshooter working for an oil-drilling company in Alaska, whose main job is to kill wolves around the facility. It’s evident that he is going through a rough patch, having lost the love of his life. He almost attempts suicide, but instead boards a plane with other workers, hoping to reach home.

The plane crashes in the remote Alaskan wilderness, and along with six workers, it’s a matter of survival. The rest of the film captures their struggle against the biting cold, starvation, hostile terrain, snowstorms, and here’s the added component — a pack of intelligent bloodthirsty grey wolves.

It’s the wolves that lend the film its title and by using men in wolf suits, trained wolves and CGI, Carnahan’s animals are more terrifying than the ones you see in Twilight or Underworld. This film has some of the best wolf attack scenes and sends shivers down the spine, and if The Grey were in 3D, it could surely classify as horror.

Where The Grey fails is in its accurate depiction of wolves. For example, one of the men says that wolves are the only animals that seek revenge and that they will attack anything that comes near their den, both of which are incorrect. Wolves do stalk, but only when there is no natural prey, and the most ridiculous — that of an Omega wolf being sent by the Alpha in the middle of the film to test the humans.

Maybe it’s these wolf myths which make the film end rather abruptly, fading to black, which could upset viewers. There is an additional scene after the credits rolls, so don’t leave early.