The torment endured by the movies’ two characters is rivaled only by that felt by the audience.
Arctic, a survivalist film directed by Joe Penna with a screenplay by Mr. Penna and Ryan Morrison, is a film that will leave you nearly as exhausted as the characters on screen. It concerns the aftermath of a plane crash in the Arctic that left the pilot, the talented Mads Mikkelsen, trying to find a way to survive. In the process, a helicopter crashes while trying to save him, and Mikkelsen tows the severely injured co-pilot (Maria Thelma Smáradóttir) across the tundra in the hopes of finding help.
While the movie is far from entertaining, it has a unique quality that has resulted in praise from several national critics. However, before buying a ticket, please understand that there are only two actors in the entire film, both referred to above, and there is nearly a total absence of dialogue. You will quickly understand that when Mikkelsen discovers that the co-pilot is Chinese and doesn’t understand English.
Given that the young woman cannot walk and dances on the edge of death, Mikkelsen must tow her across the foreboding landscape. In the process, you watch both nearly freeze to death as they try to maneuver over steep cliffs while occasionally being challenged by an angry polar bear.
This is a film where the camera allows you to peer into the heart of a man determined to survive while he watches his fingers and toes suffer frost bite. Will he live? Will she live?
Sorry, but if you want an answer, you’ll have to contact me.