The Grey is the exciting story of John Ottway (no, not Aylesbury’s very own greatest rock ‘n’ roll failure – he’s only got one t), a man who has just finished his job hunting the wolves that threaten the oil company he works for.
On the flight home, the plane gets caught in a blizzard and suffers heavily.
One plane crash later and when the only options are live or die, Ottway, accompanied by other survivors, must use their wits to outmanoeuvre the rabid wolves he used to hunt himself.
As good an idea as this is, wolves are rapidly moving into the territory of being endangered, so the film’s emphasis on the idea of a human-hunting wolf pack seems a little exaggerated.
Nonetheless, through an excellent use of models and CGI, a pack of vicious animals are out searching for food in a cold, bleak landscape makes for scary viewing.
Credit goes to Liam Neeson for taking a really tough role in his stride and delivering yet another incredible performance in his role as Ottway.
However, in this instance, it is impossible to ignore the film’s co-stars, as it is the way they build their characters and the way that they reveal themselves to each other that really makes you sympathise with them and really connect with the dire situation that they find themselves in.
Praise in particular to Frank Grillo for his performance as John Diaz – his transition from hardened ex-con to emotional wreck is something to be admired.
The juxtaposition between the survivors’ reminiscences and a very real feeling of fear allows for some brilliantly emotional and powerful storytelling.
The Grey is an incredibly well written, poignant and gripping thriller that deserves all of the credit that it gets.
It is the first real masterpiece of 2012.