Today I want to keep it light and talk about some of my favorite survival movies. All of them provide food for thought and most of them can provide you with a few things to learn along the way.
In no particular order…
I Am Legend
In ‘I Am Legend‘ Robert Neville, a scientist, was unable to stop a virus from spreading across the world. Now alone in New York City, he has spent the last three years searching for a cure, other survivors, and the means to survive.
This is not the first version of this movie, but it’s certainly one of the more popular versions. I found it easier to watch than the earlier ones, though Omega Man was quite good.
This movie makes you think about what it means to survive alone, and sheds light on just how irrational the solo survival story truly is. Humans are social creatures and don’t do well alone.
Into The Wild
I wasn’t sure whether to include Into The Wild on this list, but at the end of the day, I couldn’t keep it off the list. It’s the true story of Christopher McCandless who decided to try to survive in the Alaskan Wilderness.
The protagonist goes on a journey of self discovery, or self indulgence if you prefer, and makes quite a few rather interesting decisions along the way. A good many of those decisions aren’t exactly the wisest, and on more than one occasion he ignored people who had advice for him in favor of going his own way. In the end, this bites him in the rear end.
For better or worse, this was a bit of a painful movie to watch. I include it mostly because I have yet to find another survival movie that has a similar view into what can happen in a survival situation if you don’t know what you think you do…
The Book of Eli
Our next survival movie, The Book of Eli is thoroughly entertaining, if a bit dark at times. A drifter named Eli wanders around post-apocalyptic North America guarding a book. Along the way a young girl joins him in his travels while he is pursued by a local warlord.
A fascinating story, I don’t want to say too much more to avoid giving away the plot. That said, it’s an interesting view into survival in a Mad Max style apocalypse with a bit of a religious bent to it.
Swiss Family Robinson
A classic we all know and love, the Swiss Family Robinson is a movie about a family that is marooned on an island and settle in for the long haul. It belongs in this list because of how they build up from nothing, never giving up.
It’s a great movie, and if you haven’t seen it, you should. And it’s a great movie for the whole family, which is a huge bonus.
Obviously these survival movies are fiction (Except for Into the Wild) and are quite stylized. But look beyond the story and think about the situations that people are placed into. Put yourself in their shoes and think about what you would do.
Leave a comment with your favorite survival movies … share with the class!