STRANDED: I’VE COME FROM A PLANE THAT CRASHED IN THE MOUNTAINS (Gonzalo Arijón, France). 123 minutes. Subtitled. Wednesday (April 23), 9 pm; April 26, 6:15 pm, Bloor. Rating: NNNNN
This is not another god-awful story about cannibalism, like the sensational movie Alive (1993). It's a refreshing and deeply moving exploration of the human will to survive.
Sixteen of 45 passengers miraculously withstood harsh subzero conditions for two months after their plane crashed in the remote Andes in 1972. But their triumph was quickly drowned out by media headlines about their only available food source.
Director Gonzalo Arij-n and cinematographer César Charlone hail from Uruguay, where the flight originated and the survivors still live.
The closeness between filmmakers and subjects comes through in riveting testimonies that are expertly blended with archival clips and expressionistic recreations. Arij-n doesn't avoid the fact that people ate human flesh to stay alive. He goes beyond mere exploitive dramatic recreations of the unimaginable to compose a poetic cinematic anthem about survival.