Steely and stoic Overgård (Mads Mikkelsen) finds his advanced survival skills pushed to their limit after his plane crashes in the Arctic and a failed rescue attempt leaves him with a seriously injured woman to care for in director Joe Penna’s jarring and visceral survival tale.
Stoic yet captivating Overgård (Mads Mikkelsen) uses his ample survival skills when his plane crashes in the Arctic, but his talents are pushed to their limit when a rescue helicopter crashes in the fierce wind, leaving him with a seriously injured woman to care for. Mikkelsen’s steely, logical approach is tested by the bitter cold, lack of medical care, the difficulty of movement, and a roaming and hungry polar bear. Debut director Joe Penna, better known by his YouTube handle of MysteryGuitarMan, ignores cinematic templates and uses a restrained, minimalist touch in his rendering of this intense and disturbing survival tale. The tundra is beautiful and menacing, but not scenically framed. The grave setbacks are jarring and severe, but not overdramatized. The result is a gripping, visceral story that unfolds naturally and elegantly portrays the struggle for hope that is hard to come by in the forlorn, frozen, and empty gray-white Arctic landscape.