The Mountain Between Us, B-
Rated PG-13, 104 minutes
“The Mountain Between Us” is a high soap opera on the high mountains. Well-acted and lovingly filmed, the romance-survivalist drama goes through some familiar paces, but it’s made better by the two handsome, easy-on-the-eyes leads.
Stranded on a mountain after a tragic plane crash, two strangers, Dr. Ben Bass (Idris Elba) and journalist Alex Martin (Oscar-winner Kate Winslet), must work together to endure the extreme elements of the remote, snow-covered terrain. Realizing that help is not on the way, they embark on a perilous journey across hundreds of miles of wilderness, pushing each other to survive and discovering their inner strength.
The affecting romance drama “The Mountain Between Us” is directed by “Omar’s” Hany Abu-Assad and is co-written by “About a Boy’s” Chris Weitz and J. Mills Goodloe (“Everything, Everything”), and is mostly a two-person show. Thankfully, the two persons are the appealing Elba and Winslet, and without them, this wouldn’t be as compelling, as they must survive the elements, wild animals, and each other.
On that note, the survivalist aspects are more interesting; the film stretches believability on its romantic notions, though: these two somehow find a cabin and have time to consummate their relationship in the midst of it all. It would have worked better without that scene, and would have made the last act more palpable as the two come back to the real world and go on with their lives. The last, touching scene isn’t a big surprise, and ties things up a little too neatly, but you’ll believe in it because Winslet and especially Elba, in a sensitive part, give moving performances.
The outdoor scenes, filmed on location in Canada, is handsomely photographed by “Hidden Figures’” Mandy Walker, and in addition to Winslet and Elba, features a scene-stealing, nameless golden retriever who takes on a cougar and needs a leash even in the wild. “The Mountain Between Us,” especially in its latter chapters, is nothing new, but it should please those who enjoy romance under the skies.