By Bruce Kirkland ,QMI Agency
The Grey is a man vs. nature thriller.
That could be good or bad. In this case, because of its ludicrous depiction of wolves as psychotic killers, it is bad. The nature-science in The Grey is such a load of bollocks that I would not be surprised to find famed Canadian Farley Mowat (who authored Never Cry Wolf) picketing your local theatre. The Grey is that much of an outrage.
Honestly, though, what did we expect? Despite the use of the traditional British spelling, The Grey is pure Hollywood. By that I mean it was filmed by Americans in Canada. The wintery wilderness locations are located near Smithers, B.C.
Never mind the historical and science record -- which shows only isolated cases of wolf attacks on humans and very few fatalities in North America -- the members of the species, canis lupus, that are seen here are radically different. They love to stalk, predate, shred and devour all humans. They can even leap across enormous chasms to get at some guy. Neeson's character spouts absolute rubbish about their motives and methods, along with his own half-baked psycho-babble about the meaning of life and an idiotic poem his abusive father once recited.
It does not help that Carnahan depicts these fascinating animals in a hyper-exaggerated, almost supernatural state. As if this was a werewolf movie and not a "realistic" thriller about predators and prey. With their super-sized bodies and red glowing eyes -- and the use of fake puppetry and animatronics to create them -- these wolves are not of this planet. So Carnahan does for this species what Jaws did for great white sharks -- but without the drama and quality storytelling a young Steven Spielberg employed.
Does that matter? Of course it does. You might argue this is "just a movie," but all pop culture material creates an impression about something. In this case, the impression of wolves is all wrong and total crap. Neeson being Neeson is just not enough to save the day. Or this depressing, dystopian movie.
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If this movie “gets your fur up” we’ve put together a one page fact sheet about wolves and suggestions for their distribution. Click here