A controversial film that has so much to offer. When The Grey was unleashed at the box office it sparked the interest of many people, including animal's rights activists - arguing about the violent (perceived as false) portrayal of wolves. Which is, however a very invalid point. The Grey seeks to accomplish on land what Jaws did at sea in that nature can sometimes dominate over man while taking it's course.
Liam Neeson is part of a stellar cast in this ode to the survival genre, making The Grey one of the most thrilling movies of the year. The characters are so carved out that you will know everything there is to know about them before the credits start rolling. This makes The Grey a bit more than just a thriller as it explores all the different features of the Human when facing the inevitable - death. Lack of excessive special effects make The Grey a convincing film to watch, that will keep you at the edge of your seat since the very beginning. It's as meaningful to watch as it is brutal.
Once more into the fray
Into the last good fight I'll ever know
Live and die on this day
Live and die on this day
Above are, what I deem to be some of the most touching words I've ever heard in a film. This is the poem, written by director Joe Carnahan himself for the movie, that Ottway recites in the movie. Particularly [SPOILER] the last scene before the Alpha Wolf lunges at him. The final showdown being the decisive factor in 'Live and Die'.
As I interpret, The Grey highlights the area between black and white symbolically. In other words, both sides are equally part of the problem. The wolves aren't killing these stranded humans because they're savage beasts, on the contrary it's because these humans are trespassing in their territory (accidentally). And as it is in their nature, the wolves must defend their territory. John Ottway, played by Liam Neeson, at one point himself says, 'They were killing him' - as one of the men is killed by a pack of wolves. Which means that they're not eating him (obviously) - which highlights the fact that they aren't savage beasts but rather intelligent creatures just defending themselves.
Overall, the Grey is a gut-wrenching movie that is effective and praise-worthy. If Liam Neeson isn't nominated for an Academy Award for his role as John Ottway, I will be one unhappy land-lubber.
And if you'd like to see Liam Neeson vs. The Wolf Pack, I highly encourage you to pick up a copy of The Grey today!