“The Gray” is about oil workers surviving a crashed plane in Alaska. They crash in a wolf pack’s territory. The survivors try to make their way out.  As someone who hikes and climbs in Alaska and loves it, I found the movie gripping and philosophical — it reminded me also of another wonderful movie, “The Way Back,” about concentration camp prisoners walking their way out of Siberia. In that film the starving men chase the wolves off their prey. In this one the wolves are the attackers.  Admittedly, the plot exaggerates a bit: wolves don’t fight one on one in the real world.

This is a man’s (not a teenager’s) movie. No happy ending, but about men under stress, the way life used to be. If you love the outdoors — and challenge — and have been around in life, you’ll like this film. Would one really rather die wasted in a wheelchair or old age home, drugged, cut up by myriad operations, and slowly, the American way? Great photography, a real story. I don’t think women would like it. But the characters in this film are certainly real men, a welcome change from the adolescents in most movies.