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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Stranded oil drillers face harsh obstacles, bad scene writing

Liam Neeson stars in the new movie, The Grey. A team of oilmen who survive a plane crash struggle as they meet rough obstacles in the Alaskan wilderness.
Photo courtesy Open Road Films
Liam Neeson stars in the new movie, The Grey. A team of oilmen who survive a plane crash struggle as they meet rough obstacles in the Alaskan wilderness. Photo courtesy Open Road Films

By Kelli Henderson/entertainment editor

The two-minute trailer for The Grey should have been the two-hour movie.

A team of oil drillers is stranded in the middle of Alaska after its plane to Anchorage fails and crashes. Ottway (Liam Neeson), who the audience finds out in one of the first scenes is suicidal, attempts to take his own life the night before the crash. Ironically, he takes to being leader of the hoodlums and ex-cons as they fight for survival. The group not only has to survive Mother Nature but also a pack of wolves who feel threatened by the group’s abrupt appearance.

Liam Neeson stars in the new movie, The Grey. A team of oilmen who survive a plane crash struggle as they meet rough obstacles in the Alaskan wilderness.
Photo courtesy Open Road Films

The trailer for The Grey provides the feelings of suspense and thrill the movie intends. The trailer shows a potential beginning, middle and end of a story. But the film lacks these elements. It weaves in and out of the present dilemma the oil drillers face and snippets of Ottway’s past when he is either unconscious or asleep. The film puts up one obstacle after another for the drillers, to the point where it seems someone is playing a very bad joke on them.

However, what the storyline lacks, the actors’ abilities to portray a story like this bring it back up. Neeson is famous for action-packed films like Taken, The A-Team and Star Wars: Episode 1 ­—The Phantom Menace. The director/writer of The Grey, Joe Carnahan, said he searched to find the perfect match for the Ottway role. When asked about the role, Neeson said he questioned himself as to whether he could really pull off such a role.

“There was something of the little boy in me that thought this would be great to do,” Neeson said in a MovieFanatic interview.

The most believable scene is the loud and in-your-face plane crash. If that scene doesn’t make someone afraid of flying, I don’t know what will. The noises, the terrified faces, the glass and paneling flying through the air and hitting the passengers in the face — all seem believable things that could happen in a plane crash. The passengers’ reactions after the crash were most believable. Being in a plane that was ripped in half would be traumatizing. The actors show physical and emotional pain and a need to get a hold of oneself to fully grasp the reality of the situation.

The Grey is a portrayal of a man who once wanted nothing but his life to end. That man is forced to swallow his longing for the end and lead a group to fight for shelter, for food, for survival. Neeson fans will enjoy this movie with good photography and acting. Word to the wise: Those squeamish should steer clear. It’s quite bloody.

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