Dream team save shaky Moun­tain

Rotorua Review - - MOTORING -

and emo­tion to what is po­ten­tially a very slushy and pulpy premise, but they also boast gen­uine chem­istry and au­di­encecom­pelling charisma.

It’s a pity that J Mills Good­loe ( The Best of Me and The Age of Ade­line) and Chris Weitz ( Rogue One, About a Boy) can’t quite achieve lift-off.

Based on a 2011 book by Charles Martin, much of Moun­tain‘ s di­a­logue seems a bit too ex­po­si­tional and por­ten­tous (‘‘we can go three weeks with­out food, three days with­out wa­ter and three min­utes with­out air’’) and the ‘dan­ger brings an un­likely cou­ple to­gether’ back story is straight from the Speed play­book.

To its credit, Moun­tain doesn’t end in an ob­vi­ous place – an ex­tended coda ad­ding more poignancy and emo­tional depth than tra­di­tional Hollywood ro­man­tic ac­tion dra­mas achieve.

And ku­dos to di­rec­tor (and his dy­namic duo) Hany Abu-As­sad ( Omar, Par­adise Now) for choos­ing to shoot on-lo­ca­tion, ad­ding an extra air – and chill – of au­then­tic­ity to pro­ceed­ings. In­deed, he el­e­vates the ac­tion and the drama through clever point-ofview shots and cam­era an­gles.

But in the end, that Moun­tain thor­oughly en­ter­tains – if not com­pletely en­thralls – is down to the cen­tral pair­ing.

Let’s just hope some­one finds them a slightly bet­ter-pol­ished script and more multi-di­men­sional sup­port­ing char­ac­ters to team up with next time. – James Croot

Kate Winslet and Idris Elba help el­e­vate the pulpy premise of The Moun­tain Be­tween Us.

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