Society of the Snow Review

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Spanish director J.A. Bayona brings to life the true tragedy that was Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 minus the melodrama with Society of The Snow. The inspiration for this movie stemmed from a plane crash which marooned members of Old Christians Club rugby team and their relatives and friends in Andes Mountains for 72 days in 1972, this event had earlier been used as the basis for Alive (1993) and is behind Yellowjackets, Showtime’s current hit series featuring cannibalism. But Bayona gives his version two key aspects: An almost exclusively Uruguayan cast (Alive utilized US-born actors like Ethan Hawke, John Malkovich, Ileana Douglas), and a refusal to sensationalize the desperation of his characters who are trying desperately last minute to stave off starvation. This way Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom avoids cheap shock in favour of an emotionally poignant yet technically astounding retelling of a legendary survival story.

Based on journalist Pablo Vierci’s book Society of the Snow ,the film Society Of The Snow reaches its climax by showing the most gruesome part in these survivors’ journey starting off with a quick look into young rugby players’ life in Montevideo; uruguay´s capital city. Men are shown as boyfriends, sons and brothers deliriously excited about playing one final football game against Chile before becoming full adults. These scenes have quite unfamiliar faces cast, Augustín Pardella is Nando while Enzo Vogrinic plays Nuno; they both stand out amongst all other actors. While the latter epitomizes juvenile softness represented through vulnerability; he is an example of how much more time living passengers of flight 571 had.

The violent abruptness with which crash occurs poignantly destroys illusions over idyllic athletic life backgrounding characters. Steel parts tear up skin just as rocks cut through flesh easily too. After all the suction of bodies through windows, there is no longer any window left. The metallic sounds do little to muffle the animalistic shrieks. Then, and more eerily, there aren’t even metallic sounds: outside looms huge silence swallowing up what’s left of the airplane that once was small. This film is haunted by the horror of this crash as it sets up for Bayona’s film giving reasons for a distressing journey awaiting these men who are going to abandon not only human civilization but also their humanity.

Michael Giacchino’s skin-tingling score is ingenious in its encapsulation of this tricky dance between hope and despair; soft piano notes break down unsettling, urgent violin sequences like faith slowly seeping into the heavy carcass of despondency. When juxtaposed against the neverending landscape of the Andes, it’s almost as if the music can be heard bouncing from peak to peak ,a claustrophobic echo of the surviving passengers’ predicament.

When people become animals out of desperation, Bayona doesn’t shy away. However, he does not magnify the acts of cannibalism either. Society of the Snow instead dwells on benevolence and brotherhood in these moments. The author is much obliged to Vierci for the first-hand accounts of the tragedy that save into a trap of over-exposition. Nicolás Casariego’s great script along with Jaime Marques and helpful friend from childhood, who is a writer to Bayona, provides a wealth explanation regarding what men went through while they were talking to one another.

Conversely, this also unfolds their tortuous decision-making process that made them break their own taboos. Instinctively rational – feed or die – life tries not to ignore those lost but gratefully mentions others whose self-sacrifice had saved it all for them. Still, this script maintains its level of suspense throughout an almost two-and-a-half-hour runtime by mixing deep talks and constant worsening natural challenges like in a pendulum motion focusing on the unyielding spirit that existed among every person looking for his way out from under ice.

Individual storylines are only poorly handled by Society of the Snow , where characters such as Nando and Nuno get an opportunity to outline themselves as opposed to others who form one amorphous group tied together by unfortunate circumstances only.
It seems like an oversight done naturally which could easily be remedied- it takes nothing away from the movie’s many other virtues making it almost a modern day myth retelling.


In his Spanish film Society of the Snow J.A.Bayona shows no sensationalism about what happened in real life after Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 crash; instead he tells a human story based on resilience and survival which greatly gains from sharp score as well as script informed by firsthand knowledge about disaster.

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